Apple is putting AirPlay 2 and iTunes on Samsung's smart TVs

CES 2019: We didn't see this one coming

AirPlay 2 and iTunes coming to Samsung TVs
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Samsung is starting CES 2019 with a bang, announcing that its 2019 and 2018 smart TVs will have support for Apple AirPlay 2 and iTunes.

New Smart TV sets arriving in 2019 will get a new dedicated iTunes Movies and TV Shows app, letting users browse their iTunes library and buy or rent films and shows from Apple's store. The app will be available on Samsung's smart TVs starting this spring, and available on 2018 models via a firmware update.

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Meanwhile AirPlay 2 support will allow Apple device holders to stream music, photos and videos direct to the television. Similarly, this will also come to 2018 models in an update.

As Samsung pointed out, this is an industry first. In fact, it's an unprecedented move from Apple, which has historically kept its services locked within the walls of its own hardware. The company launched an Apple Music app for Android users, but we've not seen it push its software to competing devices quite like this before.

So why do it? Especially as it makes the Apple TV box redundant to Samsung smart TV owners, who will not get the full gamut of devices. There's a lot of speculation that Apple is on the verge of launching a Netflix-style service, and so (as it did with Apple Music) getting iTunes onto other companies' hardware would help it push that.

As for AirPlay 2, this would go hand-in-hand with the service rather nicely. It also gives people another reason to stick with an iOS device, especially if they have other AirPlay-supported speakers in the home.

Said Eddy Cue, Apple's senior vice president of Internet Software and Services, in a prepared statement: “We look forward to bringing the iTunes and AirPlay 2 experience to even more customers around the world through Samsung Smart TVs, so iPhone, iPad and Mac users have yet another way to enjoy all their favorite content on the biggest screen in their home."

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