A few months after the feature went live for Disney+ users, Disney is now rolling out Apple SharePlay to FaceTime sharing for ESPN app users. This feature allows U.S. users who are either ESPN+ streaming subscribers or signed in with their TV Everywhere credentials to watch ESPN+ sports and original content with friends via FaceTime calls.
It is noteworthy that Disney for the first time will provide the opportunity to watch live sports broadcasts together.
SharePlay was introduced in iOS 15.1 and iPadOS 15.1 after it was announced as a new iOS feature at Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference last year. Apple has selected a range of launch partners including TikTok, Twitch, NBA, Paramount+, Showtime and more, in addition to supporting SharePlay in its apps like Apple TV+, Apple Music and Apple Fitness. Disney was one of Apple’s partners in this effort, but SharePlay support wasn’t available to Disney+ users until December last year.
SharePlay sessions allow up to 32 people to view content simultaneously using FaceTime, each of whom can select audio and subtitles in the language of their choice. To use the ESPN app, users must sign in with 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 this feature.
This feature comes with the latest ESPN app update, which will be announced more widely starting 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 on iPhone and iPad, Disney notes that it will be implemented in the ESPN app on Apple TV. At this point, users who prefer the big screen can watch the game with friends on their iPhone or iPad.
“By adding SharePlay support to the ESPN app, we’re bringing fans the first ever experience of sharing live sports,” said Brian Marshall, Disney Media and Entertainment Distribution vice president of sports products and strategy, in a statement. About launch. “We are excited to offer friends and family a unique opportunity to come together to support their favorite teams and players, no matter the distance between them.”