CarPlay SharePlay-like music control is coming to the Apple TV and HomePod

Apple's latest iOS 17.4 and tvOS 17.4 beta software releases add new features to allow people to control the music playback on HomePods and Apple TVs.

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Apple's iOS 17.4 and tvOS 17.4 software updates are now available for download by developers which means that people are starting to put the software through its paces ahead of an official release within the next few weeks. That also means that we are starting to learn more things about the software and what it is capable of, including news that a music control feature is on the way.

As reported by MacRumors, Apple's new software updates expand the SharePlay music control feature previously offered via CarPlay to the home. The addition means that people can share control of the Apple Music playlist when using a HomePod or Apple TV with the system working in much the same way as it does via CarPlay.

When listening to music via the HomePod, MacRumors says that tapping the SharePlay icon at the bottom of the screen will display a QR code. When someone else scans that QR code they will be able to control the music playback even if they don't have an Apple Music subscription themselves. The QR code works with the HomePod and HomePod mini with the report suggesting such a QR code could be displayed on the rumored HomePod with a display.

When using the Apple TV the process is similar. A QR code can be displayed on the TV with people able to scan it and then request control of the music that is playing. Just like with a HomePod, the person does not need to have an active Apple Music subscription nor do they have to be using an Apple device - this will all work with Android phones, too.

Both the iOS 17.4 and tvOS 17.4 software updates are currently being tested and are expected to be released to the public within weeks. The iOS 17.4 update in particular must ship by March 6 - it contains changes to the App Store and the way the iPhone handles third-party web browsers in an attempt to comply with EU Digital Markets Act requirements. Those requirements will see Apple allow third-party app stores to be used on the iPhone for the first time, while web browsers will also be able to use their own engines rather than Apple's Webkit for the first time, too. Those changes will only take effect in EU member countries, however, with no suggestion that Apple intends to roll them out to other countries including the United States. That might change in the future if international lawmakers believe that the EU changes would be beneficial, however.

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NEWS SOURCES:macrumors.com, apple.com

Based in the UK, Oliver has been writing about technology, entertainment, and games for more than a decade. If there's something with a battery or a plug, he's interested. After spending too much money building gaming PCs, Oliver switched to Apple and the Mac - and now spends too much on those instead.

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