SharePlay

Beginning in iOS 15, macOS 12, and tvOS 15, SharePlay helps people share activities — like viewing movies and listening to music — while they’re in a FaceTime call with others. The system synchronizes app playback on all participating devices to enable seamless media sharing so everyone can enjoy the experience simultaneously.

Let people know that you support SharePlay. People often expect media playback experiences to be shareable, so indicate this capability in your UI. For example, you can use the shareplay SF symbol to identify the content or experiences in your app that support SharePlay.

An image of the SharePlay symbol. The symbol is a stylized silhouette of a person from the shoulders up, with two concentric half circles behind and above the silhouette.

Offer Universal Purchase to support SharePlay experiences among people running your app on different platforms. While sharing media during a FaceTime call, each participant views the content within your app running on their device. If a participant doesn’t have your app installed, SharePlay can help them download it from the App Store.

Helping People Share Your App’s Activities

An activity is an app-defined type of shareable experience. For example, an app that lets people view videos might define a separate activity for viewing each type of content — like movies, TV shows, and uploaded videos — and display a different description for each activity. You can define as many different activities as make sense in your app. For developer guidance, see Inviting Participants to Share an Activity.

Briefly describe each activity. When people receive an invitation to participate in an activity, your description helps them understand the experience they’re about to share. For example, a video-viewing app might associate its descriptive movie view with a movie-viewing activity. In this case, the descriptive view might display a movie’s title, a plot summary, and a poster image. Write a simple, meaningful description that’s short enough to avoid truncation.

Make it easy to start sharing an activity. If there’s no session available when people start a shareable activity, you can present UI that lets them start a group activity. In response, the system asks people if they want to share or continue the experience solo.

A screenshot of the TV app’s Watch Now tab on an iPhone, showing an image from the television show Mythic Quest and displaying a button titled Play First Episode. An active FaceTime icon is in the top-left corner and a small image of the person holding the iPhone is in the bottom-right corner of the screen, indicating that they’re in a FaceTime call.

People can use your UI to start a group activity.

A screenshot of the TV app’s Watch Now tab on an iPhone, showing an image from the television show Mythic Quest. The screenshot is dimmed behind an alert that reads SharePlay Mythic Quest S1, E1? SharePlay lets you experience content with other people on FaceTime. TV may be able to determine who uses SharePlay together in the app. Below the text, three buttons appear in the bottom half of the alert. From the top, the buttons are titled SharePlay, Play Only for Me, and Cancel.

People use system UI to share the experience or continue solo.

Help people prepare to join a session before displaying the activity. For example, if people must log in, download content, or make a payment before they can participate, display views that help them perform these tasks before showing the activity UI. Make these tasks as simple and effortless as possible so people can join the group activity quickly.

Consider presenting special offers or providing simple ways to get started aimed at SharePlay participants. A SharePlay experience is a great way for people to discover your content, and providing a free trial or special offer lets people sample your content during a group activity. Also, consider supporting Family Sharing to make it easy for family members to share your content in a SharePlay experience. If you provide new users with a way to get started, consider creating a streamlined version of it for people who join during a SharePlay experience to help them join the activity quickly. For guidance, see Auto-Renewable Subscriptions.

When possible, defer app tasks that might delay a shared activity. For example, if your app needs to know a participant’s profile, consider asking for this information at a convenient time, like when playback pauses or finishes.

Use the term SharePlay correctly. You can use SharePlay as a noun — as in "Join SharePlay" — and also as a verb when describing a direct action in your UI. For example, in a button or sheet that lets people share a movie-viewing activity, you can use a phrase like "SharePlay Movie." Avoid changing the term SharePlay in any way; for example, don’t use variations like SharePlayed, SharePlays, or SharePlaying.

Support picture-in-picture when possible. On iPhone and iPad, people can open a shared video in a PiP window. On a Mac, a shared video opens in a background window that people can move into the foreground when they want to watch.