Apple iOS 11.4 is out now! After a series of betas, the software is now available for the users to download. You can head over to Settings app -> General -> Software Update to download and install the software.
Here are some amazing and long-delayed features in iOS 11.4:
Stereo Pairing on HomePod
Do you own Apple’s latest HomePod? Then there’s good news for you. The long-awaited Stereo pairing is now available on HomePod. With this update, you can group HomePods as left and right stereo speakers.
Make no mistake Stereo pairing on HomePod is really amazing. In case you don’t know HomePod has spatial sound meaning it can scan the room and optimise audio for the best performance.
In order to activate Stereo pairing make sure your device is updated to iOS 11.4 first. Then open the home app, tap on the HomePod you want to pair. Tap details and tap on Create Stereo Pair. Now select any other HomePod and you’re done.
This paired group now appears in Control Center or any other music app such as Apple Music.
Pro Tip: If you already have two HomePods in the same room, the app will prompt to use Stereo pairing on these.
Multi-Room Audio and AirPlay 2
Play the same music across all Airplay-enabled speakers and devices
So with the introduction of Airplay 2, you can now play the same across all your Airplay enabled devices. These devices can be your Apple TVs as well. Make sure that you update your Apple TV to TvOS 11.4.
Simple play any Song from your music source, open Control Center and Tap the white circle next to the device of your choice. All these white circles indicate synchronised music playback, which means the same song is played across all these devices.
Eventually, we may see some third party Airplay 2 speakers such as Beats speakers. And the best part is that your Bluetooth devices such as Beats headphones and AirPods are already a part of Airplay 2.
Play different music on different devices
So if you don’t want to play the same music to be played across all the devices, deselect them by tapping white tick next to them.
Now open Control Center and scroll to the bottom where you see the name of each different device. Each device has its own pane in Control Center.
Tap on the album art under any panel and choose any playlist or song and that plays only on the selected device.
These missing features such as Airplay 2 and HomePod Stereo mode were responsible for lukewarm response to HomePod. Apple sold only a few thousands of HomePods as Apple failed to give HomePod some killer features.
Use Siri to Play Music on AirPlay 2 speakers and Devices
No Apple update is incomplete without tweaks to Siri. Siri still lacks many capabilities which Google Assistant or Alexa.
However, things are gonna change real soon. You can ask Siri to play Music on a particular Airplay speaker or device or a paired stereo group.
Apple fixed a bug that allowed a set of characters that include black dot to crash iPhones and iPads. There are certain other improvements.
Powered by AirPlay 2, your iPhones and iPads will continue to play music on speakers even when you receive a call or play a game. iOS 11.4 also adds calendar support to HomePod, now you can manage your appointments just by asking Siri.
Make sure you don’t miss out iOS 11.4 update as it also includes tonnes of bug fixes for all your devices.