Apple has added exciting FaceTime features with the latest upgrade, iOS 15. SharePlay is one of the features that has gained immense popularity as it allows you to share media content with your friends while on a FaceTime call.
SharePlay allows you to watch a movie with your friends on a FaceTime call. That means you can binge on the latest films or shows with your loved ones from different locations. If you haven't tried the feature yet, below is a guide on how to watch movies together with SharePlay.
How Does SharePlay Work?
SharePlay is a feature that allows FaceTime users to listen to music from Apple Music, share screens, and watch TV shows or movies on a FaceTime call together.
What’s more, it comes with shared playback controls that anyone on the call can use to play, pause and skip playback or even add music to the play queue. To make it more exciting, Apple TV allows you to watch your movies on a full screen.
If you have used the movie co-watching function from other platforms like Disney+, HULU, or Amazon Prime Video, Apple's SharePlay feature might not be as exciting to you. However, Apple has gone a step further by allowing you to watch movies from different platforms, not just Apple TV+. This feature sets the co-watching feature by Apple apart from other providers.
The trend where people watch films together virtually has become quite popular since the COVID-19 pandemic. With movie theaters out of action, tech entrepreneurs devised new ways to catch up with friends and family over the latest movies. Apple saw the opportunity for SharePlay to hit this mark as a reliable co-viewing platform.
Services Supported by FaceTime SharePlay
You might assume that SharePlay only supports Apple Music and Apple TV, but that's not the case. It works with popular video services through Apple's API. The applications supported by SharePlay include:
- NBA TV
- HBO Max
- Pluto TV
At the time of publishing, SharePlay only supports the listed platforms. When Apple announced its co-watching feature, many hoped that Netflix and Spotify would jump on board. However, these two entertainment giants do not support FaceTime SharePlay at the moment. Fingers crossed that happens soon.
How to Create a Watch Party on FaceTime
Having understood what SharePlay is all about, follow our instructions below on how to create a FaceTime watch party with SharePlay.
Locate the FaceTime app on your iPhone or iPad Home Screen and launch it. For first-time users, create a new Apple ID first.
Tap on the new FaceTime button to invite your friends for a group video call. You can add them using their phone numbers, emails, or names.
Alternatively, tap on the Create Link button to create a SharePlay watch party link.
After generating the watch party link, an Upcoming section will be displayed on your screen. Tap on the green i button that’s located next to the sharable FaceTime link in the Upcoming section.
This will present you with two options: Share Link and Delete link. Unless you have changed your mind, hit the Share Link option.
Next, the app will present you with several messaging applications to help you share the link with your friends. These include Messages, WhatsApp, Twitter, Mail, Facebook, iMessage, and any compatible messaging application. Choose your preferred application to share the invite link with your friends and family.
Assuming that the movie was scheduled, all your friends should open the links to join the watch party. Ensure you click on the Check button on your device to let them in.
After everyone is on board, launch the video streaming application of your choice. Note that FaceTime SharePlay must support the video application you choose. Check the list of supported applications above.
Next, choose the movie you want to watch, grab your popcorn, and have a grand time together. Everyone will watch in sync.
As already stated, FaceTime SharePlay offers shared controls so that every participant can play, pause, or fast-forward the movie from their device with ease. This feature is helpful because it allows users to attend to an urgent situation like a call of nature, delivery, or even a phone call without falling behind on the movie.
Can Android and Windows Users Join a FaceTime Watch Party?
Unfortunately, this feature is only available for users with Apple devices. Apple recently launched FaceTime calls for Android and Windows users, but they cannot enjoy the SharePlay feature.
Therefore, should your friends who own iOS devices decide to catch up for a movie online, you might be sidelined if you operate on Android.
What’s more, you must upgrade your Apple devices to the latest iOS 15 to enjoy the SharePlay feature.
What Else Does SharePlay Offer?
Other than watching a film together, you can listen to music together and share screens.
Instead of describing a song to your friend, you can now play it for them live on a FaceTime call. To share the song with your friend, open Apple Music, select the song you want to listen to together. What’s more, the other call participants can add songs to the playlist with FaceTime's shared controls.
Screen sharing is another possibility with FaceTime SharePlay. It is the perfect feature for business meetings with demonstrations. It could also come in handy if you need to help your parents with an issue concerning their Apple device.
Go on a Watching Spree With Your Friends Using FaceTime SharePlay
Rapidly evolving technology makes anything possible, even watching a movie virtually with your friends. Using FaceTime SharePlay, you can create a watch party and catch up on the latest blockbusters with friends even if you're in different locations.
Author: David Perry
Source: David Perry.” How to Watch Movies with Friends on FaceTime Using SharePlay”. Retrieved From https://www.makeuseof.com/how-to-use-facetime-shareplay/
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