Since the update to iOS 15.1, you can more easily share the iPhone screen with the SharePlay function. We explain how the new FaceTime feature works.
What is SharePlay?
With SharePlay you can experience different content during a FaceTime call together with other Apple users and chat at the same time. So you can watch videos together, listen to music, do Fitness + training, view photos and TikTok videos or just surf the Internet together.
SharePlay ensures that the activities for all participants run synchronously . The respective app must, however, support the SharePlay function from Apple. In addition, for songs or films, for example, all participants must have bought the respective content … so it is not enough if only one SharePlay participant has a subscription to Apple TV +, for example.
With SharePlay you can, for example, watch the series "Ted Lasso" with friends. Image: © Apple 2021
You need that for SharePlay
SharePlay only works on Apple devices. To be able to use SharePlay, all participants must have at least iOS 15.1, iPadOS 15.1 or tvOS 15.1 installed. Since the release of macOS Monterey 12.1 in mid-December, SharePlay has also been available on the Mac.
This is how SharePlay works
How to start SharePlay on the iPhone or iPad:
- First, make sure that all participants have iOS 15.1 or iPadOS 15.1.
- Start an individual or group call in FaceTime.
- Switch from FaceTime back to the home screen (you can't end the call, of course) and start a SharePlay-compatible app.
- Start a video, song or similar, tap on "Play for all" and the content will start for all FaceTime participants after they have confirmed the SharePlay request.
- You can also share your entire screen content with SharePlay. All you have to do is tap the "Screen + Person" symbol in a FaceTime call.
- To quit SharePlay, all you have to do is tap the "Quit" button in FaceTime. Alternatively, you can end the entire FaceTime call.
In macOS on the Mac, SharePlay works basically the same way. If you want to use SharePlay on your Apple TV, you'll need to make a FaceTime call on a nearby iPhone, iPad, or Mac . Apple TV can then display the media part of the SharePlay call on the big screen – simply press and hold the TV button on the Apple TV remote control and select the SharePlay icon.
You can also share the whole screen with SharePlay. Image: © Apple 2021
In SharePlay sessions, there is a common playback control for all participants, so that each user can play, pause or skip forward the synchronized media content.
Thanks to the dynamic volume control , the sound of the streamed content automatically becomes quieter when a participant speaks, so that the conversation can easily continue despite a loud scene or chorus. If you'd rather hear sound throughout SharePlay, you can simply tap "Messages" in the FaceTime controls to jump to a shared conversation without interruption.
Workouts in Fitness + become even more motivating with SharePlay. Image: © Apple 2021
Each participant in the SharePlay session streams directly from the corresponding app on their own device. Apple TV also supports SharePlay , so users can watch shared TV shows or movies on the big screen while using their iPhone, for example, to stay connected via FaceTime.
These apps support SharePlay (as of December 2021)
- Apple TV +
- Disney Plus
- ESPN +
- HBO max
- NBA: Live Games & Scores
- Paramount +
- Pluto TV
- Show time
- Apple Music
- Apple Podcasts
- BetterSleep: sleep aid
- Moon FM – The Podcasts App
- Guessing Game for SharePlay
- Heads up!
- Kahoot! Play & Create Quizzes
- Apple Fitness +
- BetterMe: Health Coaching
- Mapless Walking Directions
- SmartGym: Gym & Home Workouts
- Workout Plan Bot – Workout Log
- Apollo for Reddit
- Bluebird – Focus Timers & Tasks
- Cameo – Personal Celeb Videos
- Carrot Weather
- Doneit: Reminders, To Do List
- Explain everything
- Flow from Moleskin Studio
- Lookup: English Dictionary
- MasterClass: Learn New Skills
- Night sky
- Piano with Friends
- Redfin Real Estate: Buy Homes
- Translate Now – Translator
SharePlay is already supported by many apps, including TikTok … Image: © Apple 2021
the NBA app … Image: © Apple 2021
Disney + Image: © Apple 2021
… or Apple Music. Image: © Apple 2021
- SharePlay lets you watch a movie or listen to songs with friends while on a FaceTime call.
- IOS 15.1, iPadOS 15.1, tvOS 15.1 or macOS Monterey 12.1 are required.
- In SharePlay sessions there is a common playback control for all participants, so that each user can play, pause or jump forward the synchronized media content.
- If you watch a film that you have bought, everyone involved must also have bought the medium in question in order to be able to watch it with you via SharePlay.
- Many apps already support SharePlay, known exceptions are YouTube and Netflix.