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Home / Tips and Tricks / Step aside, Netflix party. Apple’s FaceTime watch party is coming. How you will use it

Step aside, Netflix party. Apple’s FaceTime watch party is coming. How you will use it



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Apple Introduces New FaceTime Features for iOS 15




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Apple has announced some major changes to its FaceTime video chat app during the WWDC 21 keynote this week. Upgrades come with iOS 15, that is now available as developer beta and will enter a public beta in July, with a broad public release sometime this fall, when the iPhone 13 is also expected. One of FaceTime’s most popular features, called SharePlay, allows iPhone users to host virtual viewing parties, share their screens, and more, all within a FaceTime video call.

SharePlay lets you stream the same movie or TV show as your friends, just like you can with Teleparty (formerly known as Netflix Party)), but with the added benefit of a photo in photo video chat courtesy of FaceTime. Teleparty and many other watch party apps only allow synced video streaming and an instant messaging component. And you can also use SharePlay to share music (virtual dance party, anyone?) or share your entire iPhone screen.

Read more: Here’s how to use Watch Party apps for: hulu, Disney Plus, Amazon Prime, Netflix and Sling TV.

Between screen sharing, call scheduling, background blur and FaceTime’s new compatibility with Android and Windows devices, it seems that Apple doesn’t just want to check out party apps, but Zoom also. Do you want to try SharePlay yourself iOS 15 Compatible iPhone? This is how it works.

Watch together: Use FaceTime SharePlay to stream TV or movies

Hosting a viewing party in FaceTime is actually very simple and intuitive with SharePlay. When you stream movies or TV shows with friends, the content is synced across devices and both parties have access to controls. And you still see and hear each other in picture-in-picture as you watch. Streaming services that already partner with Apple for SharePlay include Hulu, HBO Max, TikTok, and ESPN Plus.

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Apple has partnered with a number of streaming services to launch SharePlay.

Apple

To use SharePlay, both parties must use FaceTime on an Apple device that supports iOS 15, iPad 15 or macOS Monterey. Another great feature of SharePlay is that you can cast to your Apple TV while keeping the FaceTime call on your iPhone. That way you won’t be stuck squinting at a small screen while your friend’s face is blocking the show.

Shared streaming video can be cast from an iPhone to an Apple TV when using SharePlay in FaceTime.

Apple

Here’s how to set it up in FaceTime:

1. Start a FaceTime call with a friend.

2. Open a streaming app and choose a show or movie.

3. Press playand both parties can watch the same stream at the same time.

Listen together: Using FaceTime SharePlay for music

Using SharePlay to listen to a new album with friends works the same way as a watch party. When sharing music, both parties also have access to controls to pause, play, or skip songs in SharePlay. And you can even contribute to shared playlists by adding songs to a queue in Apple Music.

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Both parties can add songs to a shared queue in FaceTime.

Apple

Here’s how to share music with SharePlay:

1. Start a FaceTime call with a friend.

2. Open Apple Music and choose a song.

3. Press play, and the song will be played from both devices at the same time.

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Share music in a FaceTime call.

Apple

Share your screen: Use SharePlay to share your iPhone screen or apps in FaceTime

Like Zoom, FaceTime now lets you share your screen with others during the call, so you can share more than just music and videos. The use cases suggested by Apple include planning a trip together, browsing Zillow with future roommates, showing off a video game, or helping a friend with a technical problem by helping them out. which settings to change?. This feature also works on Apple devices, meaning you can share your Mac screen or your iPhone or iPad screen during a call.

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Share screen in FaceTime with Apple’s SharePlay.

Apple

A Downside of FaceTime SharePlay: The Streaming Subscription Issue

Netflix was notably absent from the list of partners referenced in Apple’s WWDC keynote, as were Amazon Prime Video and Spotify. And Apple notes that a subscription from both parties may be required to share streaming services, such as HBO Max, via SharePlay. It’s not yet clear whether you could get around this by sharing your video stream via screenshare instead of the app itself, or whether services like Netflix that haven’t signed an official deal with Apple will still be available for SharePlay, perhaps with a less optimized user experience.

SharePlay isn’t the only thing Apple announced at WWDC 2021. Check out all the new features coming to iOS 15, including upgrades to Apple Cards and iMessages, plus all health features are coming in WatchOS 8 and some welcome privacy updates, as a service that helps you hide your email from potential spammers.


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