It may have missed the big initial software release earlier this week, but it looks like Apple’s Watch Party-esque SharePlay feature could be coming soon. The first public versions of Apple’s software updates, including iOS 15, iPadOS 15, and tvOS 15 went live on Monday, Sept. 20th, and beta versions of forthcoming updates show SharePlay has been re-enabled.
The feature was pulled from pre-release betas of Apple’s software updates and the company announced that it wouldn’t be included in the first public launch. But now that version 15 of Apple’s operating systems is now publicly available, 9to5Mac reports that SharePlay has returned in the first public betas of version 15.1.
To recap, SharePlay allows users on compatible iPhones, Macs, iPads, and Apple TVs to watch or listen to content in sync with each other. The effect is similar to the Watch Party features several streaming services have added in the past year or so. Apple’s take on the group watch feature allows, for example, friends and family in a Group FaceTime call to watch and react to a TV show or movie together virtually.
At its most recent WWDC software developer event, Apple spent a significant amount of time touting SharePlay as a major new feature coming to its devices in the fall. As the release of iOS 15 and other operating systems neared, however, the company issued an update to developers saying the feature needed more time. Apple pulled the feature from pre-release beta versions of the software, and noted it would be made available in a post-launch update later in the fall.
And now that version 15 is officially live, SharePlay’s reappearance in beta releases suggests we aren’t too far from seeing the feature make its public debut. Stay tuned.