A few months after the feature was made available to Disney+ users, Disney is now introducing Apple’s SharePlay co-viewing experience for FaceTime to users of the ESPN app. This feature allows US users who are either subscribers to ESPN+ streaming services or log in with their TV Everywhere credentials, to watch live sports and original ESPN+ content together with friends on a FaceTime call.

Notably, this marks the first time Disney will offer a co-viewing experience for live sports fans.

SharePlay was introduced with iOS 15.1 and iPadOS 15.1 after it was announced as an upcoming iOS feature at Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference last year. Apple has lined up several launch partners for the experience, including TikTok, Twitch, NBA, Paramount+, Showtime, and others, in addition to supporting SharePlay in its own apps like Apple TV+, Apple Music, and Apple Fitness. Disney was one of Apple’s partners in the effort, but did not have SharePlay support available to Disney+ users until last December.

SharePlay sessions allow up to 32 people to watch content simultaneously while using FaceTime, with each able to choose the audio and subtitles in the language of their choice. To work in the ESPN app, users must be logged in using their TV Everywhere credentials or be an ESPN+ streaming subscriber. Their device must also be running iOS 15.1 or iPadOS 15.1 or later to use the feature.

The feature comes with the latest update to the ESPN app, which will be announced more widely from Thursday. The update is rolling out gradually, but Disney expects the feature to reach 100% of ESPN app users by the end of the week. While SharePlay support will initially only be available for those on iPhone and iPad, Disney notes it will be rolled out to its ESPN app on Apple TV. At that point, users who prefer a big screen experience can watch sports together with friends on an iPhone or iPad.

“By adding SharePlay support to the ESPN app, we are bringing a live sports co-viewing experience to fans for the first time,” said Brian Marshall, vice president of Sports Products & Strategy, Disney Media & Entertainment Distribution. , in a statement about the launch. “We are excited to provide a unique opportunity for friends and family to come together to support some of their favorite teams and players, regardless of the distance between them.”

This post ESPN’s app gets SharePlay support for watching live sports together via FaceTime – TechCrunch

was original published at “https://techcrunch.com/2022/03/16/espns-app-gets-shareplay-support-for-co-viewing-live-sports-over-facetime/”