AirPlay 2 is still in the works at Apple, and it’s seen as one of the must-have features tied to the company’s first smart speaker, the HomePod.
While Apple has already confirmed that the feature will see a public launch at some point in the near future, there isn’t a specific launch date to circle on the calendar just yet. Apple did, however, release AirPlay 2 along with the beta seeds of iOS 11.3 and tvOS 11.3 back in January of this year, signaling that a public launch may coincide with the wide release of those platforms.
However, as noted today by iDownloadBlog, following the seed of the third developer beta for iOS 11.3 and tvOS 11.3, AirPlay 2 has been removed from the mix. That means, as of right now at least, for folks trying out the pre-release software (with a corresponding public beta expected to arrive sometime this week), they will no longer be able to use AirPlay 2 to play music on multiple (fourth- or fifth-generation) Apple TV units at the same time.
Following the latest developer betas, the ability to choose multiple sources for audio is now gone. Moreover, the Apple TV has been removed from the official Home iOS app.
It is not known as of right now why Apple has removed AirPlay 2 from the latest beta seeds, and it probably won’t be known, either. As far as it’s known, Apple still intends on launching AirPlay 2 sometime in the early part of 2018, so, even if it has been removed from this beta, it may likely return to a future beta ahead of the public launch of both iOS 11.3 and tvOS 11.3.
AirPlay 2 was a buggy experience in the previous betas, but that shouldn’t be too surprising considering it was a pre-release feature baked into pre-released software. However, if it wasn’t where Apple wanted it, even in that beta stage, it isn’t too surprising for them to pull the feature out of the mix.
Here’s hoping it isn’t delayed for the public launch later this year, at least.