Apple just took another big step in expanding support for AirPlay 2 and HomeKit on smart TVs, this time adding some Amazon Fire TV models to the mix.
Starting today, both AirPlay 2 and HomeKit support is available on the 2020 Toshiba and Insignia 4K UHD smart Fire TVs. That means owners can use AirPlay to stream, share and control content directly from their iPhone, iPad and Mac. They’ll also be able to show photos directly from their camera roll, mirror the screen of their iPhone or iPad, or listen to Apple Music, podcasts and other music services on their Fire TVs.
HomeKit means customers can control their TVs—including volume control, input switching and turning the device on and off—using Siri or the Home app on iPhone, iPad or Mac.
For now, the free software update is only available for the Toshiba 4K UHD Smart Fire TV with Dolby Vision (2020 model) and the Insignia 4K UHD Smart Fire TV (2020 model). Those two models join the current AirPlay 2-supported device list that includes TV models from LG, Samsung, Sony and Vizio. The list features several Roku TV models as well as Roku connected TV devices like Premiere+ and Streaming Stick+. That suggests that AirPlay 2 integration with Amazon Fire TV streaming boxes and sticks is possible in the future.
In a separate but related bit of news, Amazon’s redesigned Fire TV experience is now rolling out to smart TVs and soundbars. The new UX debuted on Fire TV Stick (3rd gen) and Fire TV Stick Lite in December and in March it began rolling out to additional devices including the Fire TV Stick 4K, Fire TV Cube (1st and 2nd Gen) and Fire TV (3rd Gen, pendant design).
The updated UX includes user profiles, a simplified main menu bar and the ability for users to pin their favorite apps for quicker access. New features include App Peeks, which lets users explore content from apps within the UI itself, and Find, which allows users to discover content by categories like free, TV shows and movies.