AirPlay 2 and the HomePod

Discussion in 'Digital Sources' started by uofmtiger, Jun 5, 2017.

  1. uofmtiger

    uofmtiger Super Member

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    Apple announced AirPlay 2 at WWDC today. It will offer multi-room audio from iOS. It appears that it will be part of HomeKit, so it should be configurable. Not sure if it will be backward compatible with all AirPlay devices at this point, but they did say it works with the newer Appletv, so it will at least work with some products already on the market.

    The Homepod is the $350 Echo/Home competitor. It sounds like they have some room acoustics built in. It is priced a lot higher than I was expecting, but I think they are trying to compete with Sonos rather than the Echo.

    They also mentioned that Apple Music had 27 million subscribers now, so it is still growing.

    I am sure we will get a lot more info closer to the release dates.
     
  2. NAD80

    NAD80 Super Member

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    They way apple prices stuff we are lucky it's not higher.
     
  3. uofmtiger

    uofmtiger Super Member

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    They actually compared it to a Sonos speaker + digital assistant device. Under that rational, it could have been priced higher. However, they mentioned that the speaker was 7 inches tall, so I would worry that the SQ may not be up to their description. Guess we will see when reviews out.

    They also had something called an iMac Pro that starts at nearly 5 grand, but explained that a similar PC would cost 7 grand, so I guess it is a bargain. They did lower some of their entry level prices, which I am sure will be a popular move for a lot of people.

    As for the homepod, I was really hoping for something like the Dot with a digital output that was priced in the $149 range. Oh well, maybe next time.
     
  4. RT Fan

    RT Fan AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    I just took a quick look at an article about the Homepod. I was hoping for an Optical out so that it could be hooked into a preamp or BluRay player. That would be useful to me, a voice activated, cloud accessing music player, with playback through my system.
     
  5. botrytis

    botrytis Trying not to be a Small Speaker Hoarder Subscriber

    Well, on apple insider, there is an article that apple airport express users might be orphaned as the new system will require a software update to use new with old airplay. This is due to Apple moving their developers from the airport express products. Apple will no longer make hubs, etc.
     
  6. uofmtiger

    uofmtiger Super Member

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    I saw the article and understand why there is speculation about whether the Airport Express will get updated to Airplay 2:

    http://appleinsider.com/articles/17...-raising-questions-for-apples-airport-express

    I think it is too early to tell, though. Just because they don't (reportedly) plan to make new versions of these devices doesn't necessarily mean they won't get a firmware update. Apple hasn't said.

    As a side note, he didn't say that Airport Express units would no longer work the same way they do now:

    "A switch to AirPlay 2 in iOS 11 does not mean the end of support for legacy AirPlay, however. While regular AirPlay devices cannot be added as HomeKit accessories, they'll still work as previously, with an iOS device capable of streaming to one AirPlay speaker at a time."

    He believes they should at least continue to function even without an update.

    Personally, I am in a wait and see mode. I mainly use receivers with Airplay, so I am just hoping they get updated, though multi-room isn't really a big deal for the way I listen to audio. I prefer taking my iPhone from room to room and just changing the device it is using for Airplay. It sounds like, at least according to this guy's opinion, that functionality will still be there.
     
  7. botrytis

    botrytis Trying not to be a Small Speaker Hoarder Subscriber

    Well, Apple isn't particularly known for supporting platforms they no longer make. This has been their Modus Operrandi for a long time.
     
  8. uofmtiger

    uofmtiger Super Member

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    They don't make iPod Classics, but you can still sync them. So there are exceptions, if this is a rule.

    That being said, I would not buy anything for its Airplay support right now. Best to wait it out and see what happens. I think the dev conference has a class on Airplay 2 tomorrow, so maybe more will be known at that time.
     
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  9. hjames

    hjames Nabbed ... Subscriber

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    yep, keep what you've got and see what perks out in the next few weeks.
    As you say, they are in the midst of the Apple Developers Conference this week,
    and discussing all the latest in and outs of what is on the way!
    Patience, grasshoppers!
     
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  10. Bob

    Bob AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    syncing because they haven't changed the protocols is not the same as support. I have
    palm treos that still work and syncs - but Palm is long out of business. this would mean
    support from a dead company - better than a live company?

    meanwhile, back at the ranch, they just announced NO support for 32-bit devices when the
    new iOS11 is shipped. does this mean my iPhone 5c (32-bit) is still supported because it syncs?
    what's the exception and what's the rule. depends on your definitions.

    these are simply marketing decisions with intended consequences of selling more gear.
    I have a macBookPro just outside the ability to upgrade to the most currently available
    MacOS - the tech forums have a way to upgrade this so it's not a technical issue.

    From a brand viewpoint, I love Apple. there's a news article about 70billion USD sales
    of apps through iTunes. great company. buying their products is one thing - buying their stock
    is a whole new dimension.
     
  11. uofmtiger

    uofmtiger Super Member

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    It is supported, for this particular argument, when it requires syncing to work in their active, often updated, program. The way Palm updated was by a drag and drop method, so there wasn't a software from Palm used to move around files.

    The current version of iTunes still supports syncing of iPods, so yes, iPods are still supported in the context of what we are discussing... (which is Apple no longer supporting Airplay in the Airport Express within their new iOS software).

    Making every Airport Express a useless brick goes beyond not updating a computer with the current software.

    The good thing is that we will know soon whether Airplay "1" will be supported in iOS11. I think it will continue to be supported because there are so many devices that use it, beyond just the Airport Express. It may not get new features, which is a different level of support than what we are talking about.
     
  12. mhedges

    mhedges AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    Airplay 1 will certainly still be supported. There is no doubt about that. The question is how many Airplay 1 devices can be updated to Airplay 2.
     
  13. Bob

    Bob AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    the treo is different from the Palm. there was a program.

    interesting definitions of support. Microsoft, officially dropped support for windows XP, and yet it still
    works/syncs/drag-and-drop-as-proof-of-support. yet "support" here means something other than
    what Microsoft and I thinks is "supported"

    so, my definition of support goes beyond syncing - bug fixes, malware-holes-plugged, backwards
    help (like fixing doc file holes for office products before docx), problem reporting/issues addressed,
    workarounds. something more than syncing.

    however, I will go with the flow. support is if it works in any way shape or form including syncing.

    BTW msft just issued a patch for XP to stop the SMBv1 exploit from the Wannacry randomware.
    so XP is still supported.
     
  14. uofmtiger

    uofmtiger Super Member

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    Please read the discussion above. We were discussing whether the Airport Express would be "orphaned" because the "new system will require a software update to use new with old airplay".

    I wasn't discussing computers, but simply whether Apple will continue to support the Airport Express at all in the new OS. Losing the main feature of these devices would be tantamount to iTunes no longer offering syncing for old iPods. The Airport Express would essentially be bricked ("orphaned") without the update unless you had an old iOS device around to use with it.

    Yes, the word "support" can be used in different ways. iTunes still "supports" iPod syncing. That is a type of support. Apple could have just as easily pulled that feature away since they no longer make iPod Classics. This is the type of support I was discussing. That being said, his remark may have been completely out of that context, which would not be unusual for an Apple thread, so for all I know you read his remark correctly and I didn't. I try to apply some sense of what is being discussed in a thread when I respond to posts, but that doesn't mean that I always interpret these type of posts correctly.

    If his point was that Apple no longer supports, with updates, older computers, I have no argument with that. I don't know how that applies to adding backward compatibility so they don't essentially brick hundreds or maybe thousands of different products on the market, but if that is how he meant it, I can just say I doubt the two things are related.
     
  15. uofmtiger

    uofmtiger Super Member

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    I hope so. There is some discussion about whether it will or won't be supported (in the conventional meaning of the term...just so there is no confusion). Not just here, but on Apple-centric forums.

    Personally, I would like to see everything get updated to Airplay 2, but I am more concerned about whether the products I own will continue to work with at least the same features they have now.
     
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2017
  16. chicks

    chicks Lunatic Member

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    Thrift stores are filled with gadgets having the old 30-pin connector (of which there were at least two, incompatible, versions). Hope Apple doesn't abandon support for original AirPlay enabled devices, but their history doesn't guarantee it.
     
  17. Bob

    Bob AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    you are 100% correct. had we used works vs supported there wouldn't be all these threads.

    I assume, wrongly, that support means you have a problem, you call the mfg, they supply a
    fix, a patch, a workaround, or an upgrade. and not just for computers which seem to be excluded.

    however, it will soon be apparent whether apple continues to "support" older products
    that's the beauty of Apple products - extreme beauty and performance has its
    intended and unintended consequences. it should be the norm to expect
    such disturbances in the force.

    in the past, when the new iPhones were announced, there was a massive sell-off of the
    older models. nowadays for various reasons, it isn't happening. the iPhone 5s sell
    because of size, the 6's are not upgraded due to SquareD credit card readers, etc
    these are just small (qty 1) samples of my observations. yours will be different.

    if you have contacts in the Bay area, there will be someone who knows someone
    who can find out whether there's upgrades coming or not.
     
  18. uofmtiger

    uofmtiger Super Member

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    There are adapters that still give you the ability to use most of those old devices that had that dock. There isn't a workaround if they drop Airplay support completely. If I was betting, I would bet that iOS11 will be backward compatible with Airplay (1), but many products will not get the Homekit / Airplay2 update.



    [​IMG]
     
  19. uofmtiger

    uofmtiger Super Member

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    As I said, I was discussing it in relation to whether the Airport Express would still work with iOS11. Similar to iTunes still supporting iPods.

    For iOS, Apple updates them with the new OS much longer than their competition. That is one of the reasons why there is so little fragmentation in the iPhone market. This particular update goes back quite a bit:

    iOS 11 is compatible with these devices.
    iPhone
    • iPhone 7
    • iPhone 7 Plus
    • iPhone 6s
    • iPhone 6s Plus
    • iPhone 6
    • iPhone 6 Plus
    • iPhone SE
    • iPhone 5s
    iPad
    • 12.9-inch iPad Pro
      2nd generation
    • 12.9-inch iPad Pro
      1st generation
    • 10.5-inch iPad Pro
    • 9.7-inch iPad Pro
    • iPad Air 2
    • iPad Air
    • iPad
      5th generation
    • iPad mini 4
    • iPad mini 3
    • iPad mini 2
    iPod
    • iPod touch
      6th gen

    Just for comparison, here is a chart:

    [​IMG]
     
  20. mhedges

    mhedges AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    Nobody wants those 30 pin devices because they are 5 or more years old. It's not because they are impossible to still use. Heck, my kids are still using iPad 2's without issues.

    Yep, this. There is no way they would brick Airplay 1 devices. That would make no sense.
     
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