YouTube TV introduced a new “multiview” function earlier this month that enables users to simultaneously view up to four streams of sports content. Now it appears that Apple TV is developing a comparable choice. Despite the fact that Apple’s streaming device already has a picture-in-picture mode, fresh code found in the most recent iOS beta suggests that a four-up multiview feature may be in the pipeline.
Developer Steve Moser made the finding in the iOS 16.5 beta 1 release. Similar to the YouTube TV functionality, Apple’s multiview experience is currently being developed with a clear focus on supporting sports programming. Not only does the wider competitive landscape support that choice —
Not only because of Apple’s more recent investments in streaming sports content, but also because of multiview choices on platforms like YouTube TV and Fubo.
The Cupertino-based tech company revealed its first-ever live sports agreement with Major League Baseball in order to provide a selection of games exclusively to Apple TV+ in many nations, including the United States, last year. The 2022 season of Friday Night Baseball was then made available to fans without requiring them to have an Apple TV+ membership. However, the service is now accessible to customers in 60 countries globally as opposed to the initial 13. This year, the free option was eliminated, and the games now require an Apple TV+ membership.
Additionally, the business finalised a ten-year streaming agreement with Beginning in 2023, Major League Soccer will webcast each MLS game. Apple reportedly pulled out of negotiations to acquire the NFL Sunday Ticket due to concerns about the package’s restrictions, which included among other things, the inability to broadcast games internationally.
Even still, it’s obvious that Apple intends to invest in sports programming for its streaming service, which would make a feature like multiview more beneficial to Apple TV users.
The new report noted that while references to multiview have previously been found in the iOS coding, the number of references increased in the current beta, indicating that the feature is now being developed more aggressively.
For instance, according to Moser, there was a mention of “Watch in Multiview” from four weeks prior.
The code also provides further details about the product, such as the fact that it seems to be linked to the Apple TV app rather than being a feature that would be available on all Apple TV devices. Additionally, it seems that the end user may be prompted when browsing sports material in the app to try the option — for example by asking the viewer if they want to watch in full-screen mode or in the “Multiview” mode.
In general, Apple would never acknowledge in-development intentions and hasn’t formally announced the feature. Yet according to a recent Bloomberg article, the company’s upcoming major software upgrade, iOS 17, will include a number of “good to have” additions.
Although the exact nature of those features is unknown, multiview may be one of them.