he big news out of CES 2019 was that Apple’s AirPlay 2 protocol was coming to, well, pretty much all the TVs. Samsung, the world’s largest manufacturer of smart TVs, was first out the gate. But Vizio wasn’t far behind in announcing its support.
And now you can sign up to take part in a beta trial of the upcoming update.
The full SmartCast 3.0 update is coming sometime in the next five months — second-quarter is the official word. It’ll include an update to the TVs themselves, as well as an update to the SmartCast app.
From Vizio’s blog post:
We are proud to share that the latest iteration of our smart TV experience, VIZIO SmartCast 3.0, will offer support for Apple AirPlay 2, VIZIO SmartCast users can effortlessly play videos, music, photos and more directly from their iPhone, iPad and Mac to SmartCast TVs. HomeKit, Apple’s secure smart home platform, will also be supported, enabling users to easily control their SmartCast TVs using the Home app or by asking Siri. Support for AirPlay 2 and HomeKit on VIZIO SmartCast TVs will be available for registered beta members across the U.S. and Canada to experience in Q1 2019.
AirPlay 2, as our cousins at iMore deftly explain, “is Apple’s proprietary wireless streaming protocol that lets you instantly share audio or video between your iPhone, iPad, or Mac and an Apple TV or another AirPlay-enabled device.” Think Apple’s version of the Chromecast protocol, basically. (Only a little less openy.)
Vizio TVs also will be gaining support for HomeKit.
VIZIO SmartCast TVs can be added to the Home app and included in scenes or automations like any other HomeKit accessory. Customers can also use iPhone and iPad to turn their SmartCast TV on or off from the Home app, change volume and switch inputs, and ask Siri from iPhone and iPad to play movies, TV shows or music with AirPlay 2.
To get in on the beta testing, head over the Vizio.com/apple, scroll (way) down and feed ’em your email address.
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