Trending November 2023 # Apple Is Updating The Iwork App Icons In Macos 12 Monterey # Suggested December 2023 # Top 15 Popular

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Sometime in the near future, Apple is going to launch the next major update to its desktop operating system. With macOS 12 Monterey, the company is welcoming plenty of changes to the software. Including some tweaks to the user interface and overall aesthetic. And that will apparently be the case for the iWork app icons as well.

As noted today by MacRumors, Apple is making some changes to the app icons associated with its suite of apps under the iWork umbrella. Apple will be tweaking the design of the app icons for Pages, Numbers, and Keynote. These aren’t massive changes by any means, and Apple is leaning more towards inspiration from iOS than anything else here. But the publication was able to discover the new app icons within the framework of the latest beta of macOS Monterey, showing the new changes ahead of the public launch.

Not that we have all that much longer to wait before the wide launch of the upcoming software update. Apple is launching macOS 12 Monterey to the public this fall. Which, if the past is any indicator, will probably be before the end of September. You can see the new app icons just below.

The images are small because of where they were discovered, and what they will be used for. According to the publication, these app icons are what will be shown when sharing in other apps, like iMessage. It’s interesting that Apple still hasn’t decided to give these app icons a universal look across macOS and iOS yet, instead opting to still make them different from one another. Maybe that’s just part of the whole, “We’re not combining iOS and macOS” and really leaning into the idea.

In any event, the new app icons show off an overall flat design, and adopt the solid color backgrounds like we see on iOS. But that’s where the specific similarities end. For instance, the Pages app icon here in macOS 12 Monterey offers a more realistic looking pen, rather than the Apple Pencil-styled icon that’s present in iOS. It’s a vast change compared to the current Pages app icon found in macOS Big Sur, though. That app icon still has the ruled paper in the background.

Here’s a look at the current macOS Big Sur iWork app icons, just in case it’s been a while since you’ve looked at them:

Next, the Numbers app icon in macOS Monterey looks similar to what’s present in iOS right now, with its white graph bars. There are some subtle shadows to the app icon. Again, this is a departure from what’s present in the current public version of macOS, with the Numbers app icon showing off multi-colored bars and graph paper in the background. Finally, the Keynote app icon tweaks the graph on the stand itself, but the background is different compared to the macOS Big Sur app icon.

While Apple is obviously inspired by the iOS app icons, it’s not quite the same. Still, it’s better than the current difference between the app icons between desktop and mobile, at least.

What do you think of the new app icons?

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Macos Monterey Problems – Fixing Issues With Macos 12

Difficulties with new system software versions seem to always occur for a small subset of unfortunate users, and MacOS Monterey is no different. While MacOS Monterey has installed fine for most users, for an unlikely group, there may be a variety of problems or issues experienced with MacOS Monterey.

Problems with MacOS Monterey & How to Fix Them

Let’s check out some known issues with MacOS Monterey, along with some troubleshooting tips to resolve the problems.

MacOS Monterey Not Showing as Available, “Unable to Check for Updates” Error, etc

If MacOS Monterey is not showing as available to download in Software Update as expected, it may be because of several reasons, both of which are typically easy to determine and remedy.

The Mac is incompatible with MacOS Monterey – you can check a list of macOS Monterey compatible Macs here if you are not sure

There is a temporary hiccup in communicating with the Apple update servers – confirm that wi-fi is on and you have internet access, then refresh the Software Update control panel by hitting Command+R

If you know you’re on a compatible Mac, and Software Update is still not showing Monterey as available, you can also find a direct download link for MacOS Monterey chúng tôi here, which will place the full installer within your /Applications/ folder.

MacOS Monterey Feels Slow

Some Mac users may feel that MacOS Monterey is running slower than a prior macOS release they had installed. This is fairly common after any major system software update, because after installing a new OS a variety of maintenance and indexing tasks are kicked off in the background to do things like rebuild the Spotlight search index and reindex photos.

If the Mac feels slow after updating to MacOS Monterey, the best thing you can do is simply leave the Mac turned on and wait. You can typically speed up the indexing process by leaving the Mac on and idle with the screen off, perhaps overnight. Performance should recover within a day or two, depending on the amount of data to index.

Wi-Fi Dropping or Not Working as Expected with MacOS Monterey

Wi-fi issues seem to happen with some regularity to a subset of users with any system software update. From wi-fi dropping connections, to slow speeds, to other wi-fi abnormalities, all manner of wi-fi problems can crop up for some users after updating system software.

Fortunately wi-fi problems are typically one of the simplest issues to resolve, and often simply trashing current wi-fi preferences, rebooting, and then rejoining a wi-fi network is enough to resolve the problem.

Bluetooth Dropping, Not Connecting with MacOS Monterey

Some users have found that MacOS Monterey drops bluetooth connections for some devices.

Sometimes simply disconnecting and then reconnecting the Bluetooth Device from the Mac will resolve the problem.

Also, be sure the batteries on the Bluetooth devices are fully charged, or if they’re swappable are fresh. Often Bluetooth randomly disconnects due to batteries being low, so charging the batteries of the device that is problematic is a simple solution.

If you know the batteries are charged, another trick is to remove the Bluetooth Device from the Mac, reboot the Mac, then add and pair the Bluetooth Device to the Mac again. Yes that’s a little tedious but it tends to resolve these issues.

If all else fails, you can often fix Bluetooth errors by trashing the preferences.

You can also reset your Bluetooth module with the following command entered at the Terminal:

sudo pkill bluetoothd

MacOS Monterey Won’t Download or Install

Some users are experiencing issues even earlier in the update process, where macOS Monterey won’t download, an incomplete installer has downloaded, or MacOS Monterey won’t install at all.

Typically these sort of issues can be resolved by dumping the current installer, rebooting the Mac, and then redownloading the full macOS Monterey installer either from System Preferences, the App Store, or by direct download of the chúng tôi file.

Some users may see an error stating “An error occurred while preparing the installation. Try running this application again.” If you see this error, try redownloading the installer and running it again. Note however if the Mac is using a third party non-Apple SSD, that particular error message may persist until a firmware update has been able to install with an official Apple SSD, more on that in a moment.

MacOS Monterey Won’t Install Onto Macs with Non-Apple SSD

Some Mac users who have replaced the built-in SSD drive on their Mac may find a peculiar “A required firmware update could not be installed” error message on the Mac running with a third party SSD.

There isn’t a great solution to this problem for the time being, but one solution is to replace the third party SSD with an Apple SSD again, install MacOS Monterey onto the Apple SSD, then replace the Apple SSD with the third party SSD again, and install MacOS Monterey onto there. This allows the firmware update to install onto the Mac, but it’s obviously a huge hassle because you have to physically swap out a hard drive several times.

Presumably this issue will be resolved in a future MacOS Monterey update.

Additional info can be found at the tinyapps blog.

“Your System Has Run Out of Application Memory” Error and Memory Leaks with Monterey

Some Mac users running MacOS Monterey have discovered issues with runaway memory usage. This is not subtle if you are impacted by it, because you will receive a pop-up error informing you “Your System Has Run Out of Application Memory” and offering a Force Quit menu with memory usage shown to quit out of offending apps with.

In the most absurd examples, apps like Mail, Pages, Final Cut, Brave, or Firefox are consuming 80GB of memory (in the form of swap), rendering the Mac and the application basically useless and nonfunctional. Sometimes system apps and tasks are running into this issue as well, like Control Center, FaceTime, or Notifications.

Some reports indicate that using a custom cursor size or color in macOS may cause the memory leaks, therefore if you are using any customizations to the Mac cursor, it would be a good idea to reset those back to default for the time being.

One temporary solution to this is to quit out of the memory hogging app, then rebooting. The “system out of memory” error may appear again after some time, in which case again quitting and rebooting is the temporary solution.

Sometimes, the Mac becomes completely unusable by the memory leak, requiring a hard forced reboot (pressing and holding the power button).

Alternatively, you could try using a different app with the same functionality, for example using Safari instead of Firefox.

This is obviously some type of bug that will certainly be resolved in a future macOS Monterey update, and perhaps updates to individual apps as well.

MacOS Monterey Rendering Some Macs Unusable / Unbootable / Bricked

We first received reports of this bricking Mac problem on the day that macOS Monterey was released, but assumed they were a fluke. Since then, the reports have been more frequent, and more covered in other Apple resources online, suggesting the issue is more widespread than a rare fluke.

It’s not entirely clear what the issue is with this, but it’s presumed to be a failure of a firmware update during the MacOS Monterey installation.

Unfortunately there is no known fix or resolution to this issue, except for contacting Apple Support and having them start a repair.

This is obviously a bug or some other issue with the MacOS Monterey installer, and will certainly be resolved in a future update.

Though this problem is not common, it is also not so exceptionally rare that it should be discounted entirely. If your Mac is mission critical, you may want to hold off on updating to MacOS Monterey until this particular issue is resolved.

Update 11/5/2023: Apple has acknowledged this issue with T2 Macs and apparently resolved the firmware issue. For anyone who is currently impacted by this problem, impacted users are told to contact Apple Support for assistance, according to MacRumors.

“Volume Hash Mismatch detected on volume. macOS should be reinstalled” Error

A fair number of macOS Monterey users have reported a curious error message that states: “Volume Hash Mismatch – Hash mismatch detected on volume disk1s5. macOS should be reinstalled on this volume.” or some variation of that error message.

Often the “Volume Hash Mismatch” error appears after a major system crash, kernel panic, and reboot.

Some Mac users have discovered their Mac becomes increasingly unstable after they have experienced this error message.

For some users, reinstalling macOS fixes the issue.

Reinstalling macOS does not resolve the error for everyone however, which makes it even more curious.

Using Disk First Aid also does not seem to make a difference.

Downgrading to macOS Big Sur does appear to do away with the error, but that’s not a reasonable option for most users.

It’s unclear what the cause of this error is or what will ultimately resolve it, perhaps a future macOS Monterey version.

USB-C Hubs Stopped Working with MacOS Monterey

Some Mac users discovered that some USB-C hubs stop working after updating to MacOS Monterey, or they may work sporadically, frequently disconnecting, or only some of the USB-C hub ports are working.

Curiously, some users who are impacted by this find that switching USB-C cables, using a shorter USB-C cable, or changing ports on the Mac can resolve the issue.

“A required firmware update could not be installed” Error During macOS Monterey Update

The “A required firmware update could not be installed” update is typically associated with using a Mac that was upgraded with a third party SSD, or on a Mac where MacOS Monterey is attempted to install on an external SSD.

Variations of this error may phrase different error messages, like:

“Compatible internal storage is required in order to update.”


“An error occurred while preparing the installation. Try running this application again.”


“A required firmware update could not be installed.”

Sometimes simply attempting to reinstall macOS Monterey will resolve this issue.

In some cases, where the problem is associated with a third party SSD installed on a Mac, the current workaround is to switch the SSD back to the Apple SSD, install MacOS Monterey onto that, then switch back to the third party SSD, then install macOS Monterey again. A hassle, certainly.

Adobe Photoshop Elements Not Working, Freezes with MacOS Monterey

Many users report that Adobe Photoshop Elements may freeze upon launch, crash, or not open at all.

This is presumably going to be fixed by Adobe in a future software update released by them.

Apps Crashing, Freezing, Not Working as Expected in macOS Monterey

Some third party apps are experiencing issues with MacOS Monterey, whether the apps crash, freeze, or otherwise don’t work as expected.

For third party apps that are experiencing incompatibility with MacOS Monterey, updating apps regularly, and/or reaching out to the app developer is the best course of action.

Part of the purpose of Apple’s beta software period is for app developers to get their apps compatible and ready to function as intended with the new macOS system software and whatever architectural changes are made in it. For some developers, this process can take longer than others, and some apps may be incompatible with the latest MacOS Monterey release because of that.


How To Use 2Fa And The New Password Manager In Macos Monterey

macOS 12 Monterey brings several updates to Safari’s built-in password manager. It sports a streamlined user interface and provides new features like exporting and importing passwords, creating secure notes, and auto-generating two-factor authentication codes.

It’s also accessible outside of Safari, making it perfect if you want to look up a password without opening the browser. If you upgraded to macOS Monterey or later, read on to learn everything you need to know about using the new password manager on your Mac.

Table of Contents

Open the New Password Manager

Alternatively, you can open it without launching Safari. To do that, open the Apple menu and choose System Preferences. Then, select the category labeled Passwords.

View and Copy Passwords

The new password manager appears the same regardless of whether you open it via Safari or the System Preferences. The left pane lists all saved login credentials in alphabetical order, with a Search box at the top to help you locate specific entries faster.

If you have easy-to-guess, reused, or compromised passwords (Apple regularly cross-checks them against known data breaches), you will see them at the top of the list. It’s best to update them as soon as possible.

Add and Remove Passwords

Although Safari lets you save passwords whenever you create or fill them in the first time, you can always use the password manager to add passwords directly to Apple Keychain. To do that, select the Plus button at the bottom right of the windows, fill in the Website, User Name, and Password fields, and select Add Password.

Edit Passwords and Add Notes

When editing passwords, you also have the opportunity to add secure text-based notes into the Notes field. For example, you can type in answers to security questions, a list of backup codes, the purpose for creating an account with the website (in case you forget that later), etc.

Additionally, the Enter Setup Key button allows you to add the two-factor setup key for a site. You will learn more about that further below.

Import and Export Passwords

If you want to back up your passwords or transfer them to a different password manager, you have the option of exporting them to the CSV (comma-separated values) file format. To do that, select the More icon (three dots) at the bottom left corner of the password manager window, select Export All Passwords, and specify a storage location.

Conversely, you can choose to import passwords from CSV files into Apple Keychain. Again, select the More icon, but pick the option labeled Import Passwords instead.

Generate Two-Factor Authentication Codes

You can then proceed with the verification process on the site by auto-filling the 2FA verification code that the password manager generates for you. It will continue to auto-fill verification codes while attempting to log into the site going forward.

You can also set up two-factor authentication for a site even when using a different browser or app. While viewing the QR code, just look for an option like Can’t scan code? to reveal a 2FA setup key—copy it to your clipboard. Then, open the password manager via System Preferences, select the password for the site (manually add it if it isn’t present), select Enter Security Key, and paste the setup key.

Wrapping Up

Safari’s new password manager in macOS Monterey is a significant improvement, but it still falls short of dedicated third-party password management apps. If you want more, consider switching to 1Password, LastPass, and Dashlane, or get to grips with Keychain Access.

12 Fixes For When Your Airpods Don’t Show Up In The Find My App

Do you have trouble getting your AirPods to show up in the Find My app on the iPhone or Mac? Or do they appear as “Offline” or fail to relay an accurate location? 

Technical limitations, incorrectly configured settings, outdated firmware, and many other reasons can result in your AirPods not showing up in the Find My app.

Table of Contents

If you’ve already lost your AirPods, you only have a limited amount of options to get them to show up in the Find My app. Most of the troubleshooting and fixes below will focus on those.

But if you want to improve the odds of retrieving Apple’s wireless earbuds the next time you misplace them, you might want to keep reading until the end.

Technical Limitations of AirPods and Find My

The first and second-generation AirPods will only relay their location if they’re actively connected to another Apple device you own. If not, you will only see where you last used them.

AirPods Pro, AirPods Max, and third-generation AirPods will transmit their current location via the Find My network using any iPhone, iPad, or Mac in the vicinity. However, the feature requires firmware version 4A400 (more about this below).

If your AirPods haven’t been connected to a device for over 24 hours, Find My will display them as “Offline” or “No Location Found.”

Your AirPods will not relay the location if they’ve run out of battery life. That will also cause them to appear as “Offline” or “No Location Found” in Find My.

1. Quit & Reopen Find My App

If Find My has trouble acquiring the location of your AirPods, you may want to try refreshing the map.

On the Mac, just exit and relaunch the app via the Dock. But on the iPhone and iPad, you must first swipe up from the bottom of the screen to invoke the App Switcher. Then, swipe away the Find My card to force-quit the app. Follow that by relaunching Find My via the Home Screen.

2. Restart iPhone or Mac

Next up, try restarting your iPhone or Mac. That usually takes care of any connectivity issues preventing Find My from showing your AirPods.

3. Check the Find My Server Status

If your AirPods are still not showing up in Find My, you must confirm that the issue is not the result of a server-side outage. 

Just visit Apple’s System Status page and ensure that Find My (including related services such as Apple ID and iCloud Account & Sign in) is up and running. If not, you must wait it out until Apple gets its servers back online.

4. Remove AirPods You No Longer Use

Do you see a pair of AirPods that you no longer use listed on Find My? Removing them might get your current AirPods to show up.

Find My is also available in web app form. If the issue persists, use it and see if that makes a difference.

Just sign in to chúng tôi using your Apple ID on any desktop or mobile device (including Android or Windows), select Find iPhone on the iCloud Launchpad, and select your AirPods from the All Devices list at the top of the screen.

6. Put One AirPod Inside

If you manage to locate one AirPod, make sure to put it inside the Charging Case. If not, you won’t see the location of the other AirPod.

7. Activate Find My AirPods

If your iPhone or Mac doesn’t have Find My iPhone/Mac active, that will also result in your AirPods not showing up unless you enable the functionality. Unfortunately, this fix will not work if you’ve already lost your AirPods.

Activate Find My iPhone

1. Open the Settings app.

2. Turn on the switch next to Find My iPhone.

Activate Find My Mac

1. Open the Apple menu and select System Preferences.

2. Select Apple ID.

3. Under the iCloud side tab, check the box next to Find My Mac.

8. Update AirPods Firmware

Updating the firmware on your AirPods can resolve known issues and improve connectivity. For example, only an iPhone, iPad, or Mac that you own can actively relay the location of your AirPods. But if you use the AirPods Pro, AirPods Max, or the third-generation AirPods, updating to firmware version 4A400 will allow any iPhone, iPad, or Mac to transmit their location courtesy of the Find My network.

Regardless of the reason, it’s always a good idea to update the AirPods firmware. For step-by-step instructions about the procedure, see our guide to updating the AirPods firmware. But here are the steps in brief:

1. Put your AirPods, AirPods Pro, or AirPods Max inside the Charging Case or Smart Case.

2. Connect the case to its charger.

3. Keep them close to your iPhone. 

4. Connect your iPhone to a Wi-Fi network.

5. Wait for 30 minutes. Your AirPods should’ve been updated in the meantime.

9. Include AirPods in Find My Network

If you use the AirPods 3, AirPods Pro, or AirPods Max with firmware 4A400 or later, it’s a good idea to double-check that they are included within the Find My network. You can do that by using your iPhone.

1. Connect the AirPods to your iPhone.

2. Open the Settings app.

3. Tap Bluetooth and select the Info icon next to your AirPods.

4. Scroll down and turn on the switch next to Find My network.

10. Update the System Software

Running a dated version of the system software version—such as iOS 10 or macOS Sierra—can also result in all sorts of issues in Find My. So, try applying any pending updates.

Update System Software on iPhone Update System Software on Mac

Open the System Preferences app and go to Software Update. Then, select Update Now to update your macOS device.

11. Unpair and Reconnect AirPods

Next up, try un-pairing and reconnecting your Apple AirPods to your iPhone or Mac. You can do that via the Bluetooth settings on your iOS or macOS device.

Remove and Reconnect AirPods on iPhone

1. Put your AirPods inside the Charging Case or Smart Case.

2. Go to Settings and select Bluetooth.

3. Tap the Info icon next to your AirPods.

4. Tap Forget This Device. Then, tap Forget Device again to confirm.

5. Open the AirPods case or take your AirPods Max out of its Smart Case. Then, follow the onscreen instructions to enter pairing mode and reconnect the AirPods with your iPhone.

Remove and Reconnect AirPods on Mac

1. Put your AirPods inside the Charging Case or Smart Case.

2. Open the System Preferences app and select the Bluetooth icon. Or, open the Bluetooth menu bar icon and choose Bluetooth Preferences.

3. Select the X-button next to your AirPods.

4. Select Remove.

5. Open the AirPods case or take your AirPods Max out of its Smart Case. Then, select Connect to pair the AirPods with your Mac again.

12. Reset AirPods to Factory Defaults

Your next course of action involves resetting your AirPods. That will eliminate any corrupt configurations preventing your AirPods from showing up within Find My.

1. Put your AirPods inside the Charging Case or Smart Case.

2. Remove your AirPods from the list of Bluetooth devices on the iPhone (instructions above).

3. Press and hold the Setup button or the Digital Crown and Noise Control buttons until the status light flashes amber, then white.

4. Open the Charging Case or take your AirPods Max out of its Smart Case.

5. Re-pair your AirPods with your iPhone or Mac. 

Note: AirPods connect to other Apple devices via iCloud, so you don’t have to go through the pairing process multiple times.

AirPods: Lost and Found

Apple @ Work: Accessory Security Comes To The Mac With Macos Ventura

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If you watch any movie that involves hacking or cyber crime, you’ll likely see the root of the breach as a result of some accessory plugged into a computer. Apple certainly doesn’t want macOS to be at the center of a real-life breach, so accessory management is getting an overhaul in macOS Ventura. Let’s look at macOS accessory security, and how Apple is implementing it for its device management partners.

iOS and iPadOS have had strong accessory security for many years now. Even for a device that might rarely use an accessory, Apple included a strong security posture for accessories from the beginning. With macOS Ventura, the Mac is gaining a similar approach to security. If you’re running the betas of macOS Ventura, you’ve likely already seen the popup when you plug up your iPhone, a USB flash drive, or other accessories. This feature prevents USB and Thunderbolt devices from being connected without end-user approval.

The default behavior asks for new accessories, but Apple allows changing the default. Here are the four options you have for macOS accessory security:

Ask for new accessories

Ask every time (Most secure)

Automatically connect when unlocked

Always (Lease secure)

I’ll likely only have macOS ask for new accessories for my personal Mac. One thing I noticed during my testing is that after updating to the latest iOS 16 beta on my iPhone, macOS seemed to think it was a brand-new device. I am not sure if that’ll be the final behavior for the release version. I suspect that is likely a bug.

macOS admins will be pleased to note that they’ll have complete control over this setting for their fleets of Macs. The allowUSBRestrictedMode restriction that is currently available for iOS is being extended to support macOS with macOS 10.13

Summary on macOS Accessory Security

While my use of macOS accessories goes down by the year, it’s still essential for Apple to enhance the security around the use of them. The fact that it’s not as common of a use case as it might have been in years past is all the more reason to lock down the feature even more. I believe that most enterprises will default to “Ask every time.” I mainly use the ports on my Mac to either plug in an external monitor or charge my iPhone – neither of those allows macOS to allow a connection to the device. It reminds me of the times I’ve plugged up my iPhone to an airplane USB port to charge and get the pop-up to allow a connection. I don’t know why an airplane USB system would need access to my device, but the very fact that it would ask is why I am glad Apple is taking a proactive approach with macOS Accessory Security. macOS Ventura will be available as a free download later this fall.

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Airplay 2: Homepod Stereo, Apple Tv Challenges, Macos Limitations

AirPlay 2 has been out for a few weeks now after shipping a week before WWDC 2023 and almost a year after it was previewed at WWDC 2023.

In the places where AirPlay 2 works, the audio streaming feature is a notable upgrade over the original AirPlay feature — but there are also weird choices and clear opportunities for AirPlay 2 now that it’s available.

HomePod stereo pairing

HomePod audio is really good with stereo pairing — and it should be when the speaker price jumps from $350 to $700.

A single HomePod excels at not limiting a sonic sweet spot to just one place in a room since sound is delivered from all sides of the speaker. But if you close your eyes, you can probably identify where in the room the HomePod is located based on sound.

With a stereo setup, the HomePod pair does a great job of filling the room with sound in such a way that makes you think the two HomePods are actually one stereo speaker coming from the center of the two units.

But stereo output is intentionally reserved for music and podcast playback and not all audio output. For example, Siri only responds on a single HomePod, not both in sync.

The HomePod in the stereo pair that responds is also the HomePod that lights up when you say “Hey Siri” — also by design — but I think this is the wrong decision. In a smaller stereo setup, there aren’t really any practical issues with this, but it can be problematic in a wider arrangement.

In my living room, for example, I’ve noticed the further away speaker light up and respond and not the closer speaker. Siri seems to favor the speaker that you last physically touched. That’s clever, but I’d prefer both light up and respond in stereo.

Phone calls are also limited to one HomePod in stereo. My guess is that this is because only one HomePod uses its microphones for the phone call, but I would prefer both speakers to always play audio in stereo when paired.

Breaking the illusion of one stereo pair when a single speaker reacts can be disorienting.

Apple TV as AirPlay 2 speakers

Controlling audio playback AirPlay 2 speakers from Siri on the iPhone, iPad, Apple TV, or HomePod is really useful. Turning any Apple TV 4 or Apple TV 4K into an AirPlay 2 speaker is also great for building out your multi-room playback potential.

But once you have dedicated AirPlay 2 speakers throughout your home, Apple TV speakers as AirPlay 2 targets can get in the way. I wouldn’t mind an option to hide Apple TVs from AirPlay 2.

The problem has two parts.

First, TV speakers are often optimized for movie playback and not music playback. Many speakers let you switch equalization modes, but this isn’t an automatic change based on what is playing. I’ve found that music sounds way better through a HomePod stereo pair than my TV’s more expensive sound bar, and movies sound better through the sound bar than the HomePods.

Second is volume control. HomePod volume ranges 0 through 100. Simple as that. But Apple TV speakers have their own independent volume levels, then the AirPlay 2 source also has a separate volume slider.

For example, my sound bar volume ranges 0 through 40. We keep it around 10-20, but 50% on the source slider is half what we expect to hear. The solution is to turn the sound bar all the way up for AirPlay 2, then manage the AirPlay 2 source volume slider.

If given the option, I would probably choose to hide Apple TV from AirPlay 2 through Siri and the Now Playing Control Center tiles. I love multi-room audio playback between multiple HomePods and I look forward to adding other AirPlay 2 speakers in the future, but Apple TVs frankly just pollute the experience for me right now.

macOS support is limited

The last AirPlay 2 challenge that I’ve faced is limited support on macOS and no support on watchOS. You can’t tell Siri on Mac or Apple Watch to play music on a speaker in a specific room like you can on iOS, HomePod, and tvOS. Maybe in a future release, but not yet (even in beta).

Limited macOS support is especially frustrating. You’ve long been able to target multiple AirPlay speakers from iTunes exclusively, and AirPlay 2 allows you to target multiple speakers (including stereo HomePod pairs) from any app on iOS.

Using ‘Switch to:’ from iTunes lets you remotely control music playback on the AirPlay 2 speaker versus sending it from iTunes to the speaker. This section is also the only area that will let you do see a stereo pair of HomePods as one unit. (And it only works with music, not podcasts.) This could be easier to understand…

Outside of iTunes, macOS doesn’t recognize paired HomePods as one stereo unit. System audio will see a paired HomePod setup as two individual targets so there’s no built-in way to make a left + right HomePod arrangement serve as your computer speakers.

Proper AirPlay 2 support from macOS is needed.

Apple nailed the fundamentals of AirPlay 2. Latency is dramatically reduced by design, multi-room AirPlay from any source on iOS is super welcome, and Siri control is really approachable. Now that the basics are finished and available, I hope we see some of the rough edges polished in the coming months.

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