Major Streamers Signup for Apple’s New SharePlay
To simplify co-viewing, Disney+, ESPN+, HBO Max, Hulu, Paramount+, Pluto TV and others are integrating SharePlay into their apps
CUPERTINO, Calif.—Following the announcement that Apple will make co-viewing and sharing content easier with its new SharePlay product, a number of major streamers and digital companies have indicated that they are integrating SharePlay into their apps.
As part of a major update to its operating system, Apple’s iOS 15 will allow users to share experiences using SharePlay while connecting with friends on FaceTime.
SharePlay will let them listen to songs together with Apple Music, watch a TV show or movie in sync, or share their screen to view apps together.
SharePlay works across iPhone, iPad, Mac, and Apple TV, where users can watch shows or movies on a big screen while connecting over FaceTime, with SharePlay will keep everyone’s playback in sync.
In making the announcement, Apple noted that Disney+, ESPN+, HBO Max, Hulu, MasterClass, Paramount+, Pluto TV, TikTok, Twitch, and “many others” are integrating SharePlay into their apps.
Notably, Netflix and Spotify were not listed by Apple.
The announcement taps into a major digital trend during the pandemic, when isolated consumers turned to various apps and technologies to watch the same content or listen to the same music.
“We’re incredibly excited to participate as a developer on SharePlay to enable innovative viewing experiences across Disney Plus, Hulu and ESPN Plus for our Apple users,” Jerrell Jimerson, executive vice president of product and design at Disney Streaming, said in a statement reported by Yahoo News. “This will give friends and family another way to come together to share the incredible stories that we deliver through our content, including bringing a live sports co-viewing experience to ESPN Plus for the first time.”
In addition, Apple will offer a web-based version of FaceTime, which will allow Apple users to connect and use SharePlay with others using Android devices or PCs.
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George Winslow is the senior content producer for TV Tech. He has written about the television, media and technology industries for nearly 30 years for such publications as Broadcasting & Cable, Multichannel News and TV Tech. Over the years, he has edited a number of magazines, including Multichannel News International and World Screen, and moderated panels at such major industry events as NAB and MIP TV. He has published two books and dozens of encyclopedia articles on such subjects as the media, New York City history and economics.