Samsung got a head start, but LG is the latest TV maker to integrate Apple’s AirPlay 2 and HomeKit technologies with its latest premium smart TVs. The company has announced that it will begin rolling out a firmware update tomorrow, July 25th, that adds both features to 2019 OLED TVs, NanoCell TVs, and UHD TVs with ThinQ. Some other manufacturers are extending AirPlay 2 to older models, but LG is rather unfortunately limiting the feature to this year’s TVs only.
LG is claiming to be the “first global TV manufacturer to support HomeKit.” It’s able to say that because, although Samsung added AirPlay 2 and a new Apple TV app to its TVs earlier this year, Samsung so far has not done the same with HomeKit.
The reasoning is pretty straightforward, if a drag for consumers: Apple’s smart home platform competes directly with Samsung’s SmartThings division, which isn’t a conflict that most other TV makers have to worry about. So LG is adding both right from the start. (There’s no Apple TV app for LG TVs yet, however.)
AirPlay 2 lets iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac owners watch or listen to content on the TV screen with a tap. HomeKit makes it possible to control LG’s TVs with the Home app or with Siri for “basic TV functions such as power, volume and source.” The TVs can also be added to scenes or automations that might include other HomeKit accessories.