Apple releases iTunes 12.8 with AirPlay 2 support

Along with macOS High Sierra 10.13.6, Apple has released iTunes 12.8 which now supports AirPlay 2 multi-room audio and HomePod stereo pairs.

Use the AirPlay menu to easily group HomePod, Apple TV, and other AirPlay 2-enabled speakers and control what plays next.

More info and download link for iTunes 12.8 here.

MacDailyNews Take: AirPlay 2 goodness is now everywhere!


    1. Same here.

      I’ve five iDevices that would need indevidually updating if using iTunes 12.8. GarageBand and a racing app I have regularly update over 1gb in size each. So that’s more than 8gb I have to download instead of just over two. Not to mention that if an app is pulled and I will lose it next time I reinstall iOS.

      Not good enough Apple.

  1. Well, Apple finally incorporated AirPlay 2 into iTunes thirteen months after initially announcing the HomePod. Progress! However, I have discovered that I can’t listen to any AirPlay speakers if I’m streaming to my stereo paired HomePods. I may be wrong, but it seems one can’t mix and match AirPlay and AirPlay 2 speakers. So, either I dump/ replace all of my older (but fine) speakers and go all AirPlay 2 or don’t stereo pair my HomePods. Hmmm…

  2. What am I missing? 12.8 is installed, but it appears to work no differently than before. My left and right speaker show up as separate speakers. I can only play music from one of them. If you select the left, then the right, the left stops playing. I also have 12.9 of iTunes on the Mohave beta and seeing the same thing. My iPhone sees the two speakers as a pair, no problem.

    1. I set up my HomePods with my iPhone. It took a while for them to show up correctly on iTunes. I opened and closed iTunes a few times, too. By the way, can AirPlay and AirPlay 2 speakers be used at the same time if streaming from and iOS device? Anyone know? Thanks?

  3. To be clear, AirPlay 2 basically extends Apple’s proprietary wifi audio/video streaming protocol into multi-room environments, and enlarges the buffer for supposedly fewer dropouts, though we all know streaming performance is only as good as your network. With AP2 you will now be able to stream from one source to multiple Airplay products simultaneously. The key however is that the source for your media playback ALWAYS has to be an Apple product that supports AP2. Apple has not licensed AP2 to other source component makers yet as far as I know — only speaker makers. The golden cage will always extract its toll.

    AP2 was announced before the HomePod, and with OS update should work on Mac and iOS hardware produced in the last ~5 years or so as far as we know, though we haven’t yet tested Airport Express (which Apple in its infinite stupidity has decided to kill off in favor of the overpriced Apple TV). AP2 however DOES NOT WORK with most legacy 3rd party Airplay devices, source or speaker. Obviously Apple is trying to cash in by obsoleting a lot of excellent legacy audio products in the field. If a modern Airport Express existed, one could turn any excellent speaker into a wireless speaker. But no, Apple doesn’t want you to have choices like that. Apple wants to sell HomePods and collect license fees from these superior speaker manufacturers:

    But whatever, Apple, we have an extensive media collection and we’re never going to subscribe to your streaming low-bitrate stuff. I’d rather enjoy our current B&W Zeppelin in glorious stereo in the office using Airplay 1.0 rather than pay the Apple Tax to buy a two new monopole speakers for the privilege of keeping up with Apple’s demands. The beauty of supporting other audio specialists is that those other products can be interconnected to any manufacturer’s components, new or old. What a concept! Reverse compatibility, once a hallmark of Apple software, seems to have been lost in the rush to get users onto monthly streaming media subscriptions. Apple wants to have middle man position on a wireless protocol, and Google of course will offer its proprietary casting platform which records every move you make, Amazon will respond with something too — and other great audio companies like Yamaha will attempt to offer best of all worlds with a Musicast platform. But the reality is that if you care about performance — all of them are inferior to wired connections in every measurable way. If you want multiroom audio that just works, run a wire.

    good reference:

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.