LG has finally started to roll out the ability to use AirPlay 2 and HomeKit on its Smart TVs from 2018 onwards – something the South Korean company promised back in September, when the Apple TV app started to land on these sets. As with other models, this is a phased rollout, so it could take a little while before the new functionality is available in your home… even if your neighbour is already able to take advantage on their LG telly.
With AirPlay 2, iPhone and iPad owners can stream songs, videos, and more directly to an LG TV without an Apple TV. That means those who subscribe to Apple’s all-new Fitness+ will be able to follow along with the work-out classes on the big screen, or younger iPhone owners will be able to beam games to the telly. Unlike Bluetooth, using AirPlay 2 to stream music to your TV (and more importantly, the sound system plugged into your TV) means you’ll be able to continue using your iPhone to make and receive calls without every sound booming from your speakers.
If you already have other AirPlay 2-enabled gadgets around the house, like a Sonos speaker system, you’ll be able to add the LG set and any connected soundbar or speakers to a group. Grouping speakers together allows you to play music across a number of rooms in your house from a single device.
As for HomeKit, this enables Apple device owners to control the TV using the Home app or Siri. So, you’ll be able to switch on or off your telly from another room, or use Siri to control the volume.
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Neither of these features are probably worth upgrading from your existing telly to access, but are a brilliant boost in functionality for those who already own an OLED TV from LG. The arrival of AirPlay 2 and HomeKit on the 2018 models means anyone with a 2018, 2019 or 2020 OLED TV from the firm now has access to these features. By bringing them to older sets, those who are looking to buy second-hand will also be able to take advantage of the update.
LG has initially only pledged to offer AirPlay 2 and HomeKit for its 2019 and newer models due to performance concerns. However, the South Korean firm later reversed course and confirmed plans to launch a software update with the extra Apple functionality for TVs from 2018 as well.
Other companies, including Samsung, Vizio, and Sony, have also added the Apple TV app, as well as AirPlay 2 and HomeKit on their Smart TVs.