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Vizio yesterday launched a beta version of its updated Smartcast software, which allows iPhone owners who have a Smartcast-enabled TV to use AirPlay 2 and HomeKit integrations for the first time on a third-party television set.

We picked up a compatible Vizio television set (which includes the recent P and M series models at the current time) and were able to take a look at how AirPlay 2 and HomeKit work on a non-Apple device.


AirPlay 2 support on the Vizio TV lets allows TV shows and movies to be streamed from an iOS device directly to the television, with no Apple TV set-top box required. A movie can be started on the iPhone and AirPlayed right to the TV, with support for 4K HDR and Dolby Vision included.

Mirroring a Mac or iOS device screen to the TV is also possible, letting photos, spreadsheets, webpages, documents, games, and more be displayed on the larger display of the television set. We couldn't get this feature working in the beta, but it should be available in the launch version of the software.

AirPlay 2 support allows multiple audio sources to play the same content, which means a song can be played on a single television set, multiple television sets, or a Vizio TV and other AirPlay 2-enabled devices like HomePods for whole home audio.

AirPlay 2 functionality is linked with HomeKit, so Vizio television sets that support Apple's new protocols will show up right in the Home app on iPhone, iPad, and Mac.

From the Home app, you can do things like switch inputs, turn the television on and off, and adjust the volume. Siri can also be used for these commands, so a simple Hey Siri voice request on one of your devices can adjust volume or turn the TV on or off, just like with other HomeKit products.

Siri can AirPlay content from an iOS device or Mac to the TV too, which means a command like "Hey Siri, play Game of Thrones on the living room TV" is a quick way to play a TV show or movie without having to search for it.

Vizio's AirPlay 2 and HomeKit beta is open to all Vizio owners with a Smartcast-compatible television set, and if you're interested in signing up, you can do so on Vizio's website. At the current time, the beta works with P and M series TV sets from 2016 and beyond, but it will be rolling out to other Vizio TV owners in the future.

When the feature launches, AirPlay 2 and HomeKit will work on the following Vizio TVs, based on Apple's HomeKit TV list:
[*]VIZIO P-Series Quantum X (2019)
[*]VIZIO P-Series Quantum (2019 and 2018)
[*]VIZIO P-Series (2018, 2017 and 2016)
[*]VIZIO M-Series Quantum (2019)
[*]VIZIO M-Series (2018, 2017 and 2016)
[*]VIZIO E-Series (2018, 2017 and 2016 UHD models)
[*]VIZIO V-Series (2019)
[*]VIZIO D-Series (2018)TVs from many other brands will also be getting AirPlay 2 and HomeKit support, including LG, Sony, and Samsung (no HomeKit). Apple also plans to bring its new TV app to third-party television sets in the future as well.

Apple's TV partners are planning to officially launch AirPlay 2 and HomeKit features at some point in the summer.

Article Link: Hands-On With AirPlay 2 and HomeKit on a Vizio SmartCast TV
 

meihcydna

macrumors regular
Aug 23, 2009
147
3
Volume can be controlled through the Control Center remote using the volume buttons on your iOS device
 

M.PaulCezanne

macrumors 6502a
Mar 5, 2014
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Is the video/audio quality the same as a native app or Apple TV app?

Also, I think LG will only make this available for the 2019 and later TVs, which would suuuuuck. There is literally no technical reason why it wouldn’t work on my C8.
 
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outskirtsofinfinity

macrumors 6502
Aug 2, 2017
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Calgary
My Vizio is not a TV. It is a panel or a display as there is no RF input. Anyway. Will this AirPlay functionality come to my compatible Vizio as a firmware upgrade when it launches? Or do I have to manually download some app for the Vizio? I bought my Vizio because it was a dumb display with no fugly “apps”. But they since messed that up by pushing apps onto the display. So now I have a Netflix app on the display as well as on Apple TV lol. And I’m not sure how to download or delete these Vizio apps. Does AirPlay 2 come as an app? Is it mostly geared towards people who don’t have Apple TV? Sorry if dumb question.

And the signup link in the article goes to a 404 error.
 
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Icaras

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Mar 18, 2008
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Is the video/audio quality the same as a native app or Apple TV app?

Also, I think LG will only make this available for the 2019 and later TVs, which would suuuuuck. There is literally no technical reason why it wouldn’t work on my C8.

Or a C7, which I have.
 
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Aidyn's X

macrumors regular
Mar 25, 2010
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When will you be able to tell Siri to do things like turn off the tv with the AppleTV. When my AppleTV goes to sleep now, it turns off the TV so why can't I tell HomePod to turn off the tv or make it an action in HomeKit? You would think Apple would add this functionality to its own devices before third party ones.
 

nutmac

macrumors 603
Mar 30, 2004
5,730
6,363
Meanwhile... LG be like "Buy our new TV's"
To be fair, only Vizio is adding HomeKit to older models. Although to Samsung's credit, it is bringing AirPlay 2 to 2018 models as well.

Sony is also adding HomeKit to mid-to higher-end 2019 TVs (Z9G, A9G, X950G, X850G).
 

69Mustang

macrumors 604
Jan 7, 2014
7,889
15,034
In between a rock and a hard place
To be fair, only Vizio is adding HomeKit to older models. Although to Samsung's credit, it is bringing AirPlay 2 to 2018 models as well.

Sony is also adding HomeKit to mid-to higher-end 2019 TVs (Z9G, A9G, X950G, X850G).
If I'm honest, I don't think many even care about Homekit integration, or Homekit at all for that matter. I think most here are excited about AirPlay2. I could be wrong, but anecdotally, the comments back my premise. LG still wants you to buy a new TV.:)
 

PhyrePhox

macrumors regular
Jun 29, 2009
134
25
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
My Vizio is not a TV. It is a panel or a display as there is no RF input. Anyway. Will this AirPlay functionality come to my compatible Vizio as a firmware upgrade when it launches? Or do I have to manually download some app for the Vizio? I bought my Vizio because it was a dumb display with no fugly “apps”. But they since messed that up by pushing apps onto the display. So now I have a Netflix app on the display as well as on Apple TV lol. And I’m not sure how to download or delete these Vizio apps. Does AirPlay 2 come as an app? Is it mostly geared towards people who don’t have Apple TV? Sorry if dumb question.

Not clear from your comments if you want the update or not. It's not as though you are forced to use the apps. Regardless, according to this page "VIZIO Smart TVs receive Firmware Updates automatically."

And the signup link in the article goes to a 404 error.
You live in Canada, and the website for Vizio uses geolocation, so your request is redirected to the en-ca version of the page, which does not exist.
 
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Cmd-Z

macrumors 6502a
Nov 14, 2014
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Coyote, CA

AirPlay 2 support allows multiple audio sources to play the same content ...
I think you have "sources" and "AirPlay devices" mixed up. A "source" is where the media is originating from.

This should say, "AirPlay 2 support allows a source to play the same content on multiple AirPlay devices ..."
 

AgentOSX

macrumors regular
Sep 4, 2017
104
181
Hollywood
I tried to sign up for one of my eligible Vizio TVs but the Vizio app told me I had to also run a beta version of iOS to try it. I’ll try again tonight in case it was a glitch.
 

ipedro

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Nov 30, 2004
5,875
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Toronto, ON
Watching Apple's moves in this space, transferring Apple TV's functions directly to third party TVs and others to HomePod I believe that there's a good chance that HomePod is going to become the centre of the home, taking over that capacity from the AppleTV.

AppleTV is progressively becoming software rather than hardware. This was confirmed in the renaming of the TV app to Apple TV and the service as Apple TV+. Apple has worked with major TV manufacturers to get AirPlay on all TVs going forward and as we can see here, they're building in depth HomeKit and remote app support and have also announced that the Apple TV will be available on TVs as an app.

Further fitting this strategy is that Apple is downgrading the importance of tvOS' home screen in favour of the Apple TV app. Pressing the Home button on the Siri remote now takes you to the Apple TV app, not to the Home screen. Unlike tvOS, the Apple TV app is self contained which enables it to be easily ported to third party manufacturers.

HomePod has already taken on the task of being a HomeKit hub from the Apple TV. It already plays Apple Music in your home and works as an assistant as well. With Siri Shortcuts, Apple has enabled developers to put their iOS apps on HomePod.

Now, what if it could take commands to play TV shows and movies on a TV? "Hey Siri, play Star Trek Discovery in the living room". Well, it just so happens that in iOS 12.2 Siri on iPhone and iPad became capable of doing exactly that. When the feature comes to the HomePod, you won't really need to have an Apple TV if your TV either supports AirPlay or has the Apple TV app (or both).

In the Fall when AppleTV+ is launched, I expect this strategy to tie up loose ends with perhaps an HDMI AirPlay stick + remote to be released for those without AirPlay enabled TVs or who want to use a tvOS UI and Siri remote with their TVs.

Today's HomePod price cut is another important step to build on this strategy as it becomes the device you purchase instead of an AppleTV and needs to be affordable. The current model Apple TV is $199. At $299 for an Apple TV replacement, a premium speaker and access to thousands of iOS apps via Siri Shortcuts, the HomePod starts to make a lot more sense.

RIP hockey puck Apple TV (sometime this Fall).
 
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Craiger

macrumors 6502a
Jul 11, 2007
845
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How is it a Vizio TV can be controlled in HomeKit. But my Apple TV cannot. All I want to be able to do is turn it off.
Yesss! Wtf. I can turn my Vizio tv on with HomeKit now but not my APPLE tv?
 

keys

macrumors member
Apr 9, 2007
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macdragonfl

macrumors 6502a
Jan 11, 2006
578
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Ft. Lauderdale,Fl
Unfortunately they don’t have to. Aside from voting with our wallets years from now when it’s time to upgrade our TV sets, this is probably as much we current owners can do and hope for at this point.

I already voted with my wallet as my older LG 1080 set went out, I had to buy a new 4k so went with Samsung as they had already stated they would update the entire 6, 7, 8 series 2018 line.
 
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ipedro

macrumors 603
Nov 30, 2004
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Toronto, ON
I already voted with my wallet as my older LG 1080 set went out, I had to buy a new 4k so went with Samsung as they had already stated they would update the entire 6, 7, 8 series 2018 line.

I'm never buying an LG TV ever again. They made sure their customers know that they don't support their products, even those who just purchased. My LG TV is about 4 years old now and I'll be in the market for a new one next year. It sure as hell won't be an LG.

I wonder what kind of marketing genius decided this.

"Get this, we'll withhold this feature that can be perfectly implemented in software, so that our customers will go out and buy another LG TV! We'll be rich!"

"But Jim, what about those customers who just purchased a 2018 TV? They're not going to go b..."

"They'll buy a 2019 TV!!"
 
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TxExCxH

macrumors regular
May 16, 2014
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Is the video/audio quality the same as a native app or Apple TV app?

Also, I think LG will only make this available for the 2019 and later TVs, which would suuuuuck. There is literally no technical reason why it wouldn’t work on my C8.

I have a C8 too and I’m hoping they change their minds. There is a petition to have them bring it to some of the older models. It’s over 10,000 rifht now, hopefully you signed it.
 

macdragonfl

macrumors 6502a
Jan 11, 2006
578
303
Ft. Lauderdale,Fl
I'm never buying an LG TV ever again. They made sure their customers know that they don't support their products, even those who just purchased. My LG TV is about 4 years old now and I'll be in the market for a new one next year. It sure as hell won't be an LG.

I wonder what kind of marketing genius decided this.

"Get this, we'll withhold this feature that can be perfectly implemented in software, so that our customers will go out and buy another LG TV! We'll be rich!"

"But Jim, what about those customers who just purchased a 2018 TV? They're not going to go b..."

"They'll buy a 2019 TV!!"
Whats even worse it is totally possible with any webOS tv, as you can hack webOS thru homebridge and add it to HomeKit quite easily. I almost went that route. In the end it was a decision on the princeable of having to do that when the manufacture is just being unreasonable to at least update all 2018 models.
 
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