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Apple rumored to unveil Wi-Fi free version of AirPlay at Sept. 12 event

post #1 of 50
Thread Starter 
A report on Tuesday claims inside knowledge of a new AirPlay feature Apple will allegedly introduce at its widely rumored Sept. 12 special event, with the new technology allowing users to stream audio directly to HiFi units or speakers without a Wi-Fi network.

According to people familiar with Apple's plans, the so-called AirPlay Direct tech will require only an iDevice and compatible audio equipment for music streaming, doing away with the feature's current need of a Wi-Fi network, reports the Telegraph.

While details are scarce, including the name which is still a "working title," it is thought that AirPlay Direct will create an ad hoc connection with supporting audio units. Technically, this solution would still require Wi-Fi functionality from both devices, however the need for a connected network would be negated.

It is unclear whether the rumored tech will be audio only and still carry the AirPlay moniker, as Apple previously called the media sharing service AirTunes when it only supported music.

Apple's AirPlay is a proprietary wireless sharing protocol based on RTSP technology that allows for the streaming of audio and video using the company's own encoding tools. First introduced in 2010 as an augmentation to AirTunes, AirPlay is able to stream audio and video content wirelessly to a number of supported devices like stereos, receivers and the Apple TV.

AirPlay


According to the sources, Apple will debut AirPlay Direct alongside a next-generation iPhone at an as-yet-unannounced special event on Sept. 12.
post #2 of 50

So would the new iDevices have Wifi that can connect to two devices, Internet and these new ad-hoc ones?hmm2.gif

 

 


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post #3 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by logandigges View Post

So would the new iDevices have Wifi that can connect to two devices, Internet and these new ad-hoc ones?hmm2.gif

I'd guess it's using the same tech foundation as AirDrop so it'll only be devices that have the right types of WiFi installed, which probably means it'll be new to the next iPhone as I don't recall anything out of the ordinary for the iPad (3) or other iDevices.

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post #4 of 50

This aught to be an interesting concept.

post #5 of 50

I agree with the above, as AirDrop already works without a network by creating it's own ad-hoc connection.

post #6 of 50

Less stress on the network I guess, but otherwise seems like a non-event.

post #7 of 50
all i need is an apple-provided airplay server on mac os x, please. please?
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post #8 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by enjourni View Post

Less stress on the network I guess, but otherwise seems like a non-event.

Speaking of stress on the network, they really need to beef up their routers. Every company that makes consumer routers does. There are just far too many devices connected since these routers first appeared and they are a bottleneck. Now the simultaneous dual-band routers do help but the next iPhone is looking to offer 5GHz so even that will not be as ideal in the future to split devices. Even if you still did that, the router's processing of the WiFi, the Ethernet switch and everything coming from and going to the WAN is a major bottleneck these days. While it's not the major of broadband users I'd say there are plenty that are running at 100Mb's and higher that would warrant beefier home systems.

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post #9 of 50

Finally...built-in FM transmitters!
 

post #10 of 50

If it's not Wi-Fi then it will have to be BlueTooth. Apple did join as a Board Member June 2011.

post #11 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

While details are scarce, including the name which is still a "working title," it is thought that AirPlay Direct will create an ad hoc connection with supporting audio units. Technically, this solution would still require Wi-Fi functionality from both devices, however the need for a connected network would be negated.

I'm just curious - how many people who would use this don't already have a WiFi network in their home? I can't believe that the number is very large. Heck, even my 80+ year old mother who is as technophobic as anyone out there has WiFi.
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post #12 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by CodeWarrior View Post

If it's not Wi-Fi then it will have to be BlueTooth. Apple did join as a Board Member June 2011.

It could be BT but note that 'without a WiFi network" doesn't mean "without WiFi".


PS: Technically speaking, an ad-hoc network is still a network but it's such an atypical network that I doubt anyone will take offense.

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"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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post #13 of 50

"...Wi-Fi free version..."

 

Wha-tcho talk'n about Willis?

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post #14 of 50

This is interesting.

post #15 of 50

Seeing this screenshot reminds me how badly iTunes 11 NEEDS a UI overhaul.

post #16 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post


I'm just curious - how many people who would use this don't already have a WiFi network in their home? I can't believe that the number is very large. Heck, even my 80+ year old mother who is as technophobic as anyone out there has WiFi.

IT's not about how many people have Wifi networks at home, it's about how many audio devices in your home can connect to your wifi network.

post #17 of 50

I guess Tim's "doubling down" on security hasn't started yet.

post #18 of 50

Here's the wired version.

 

post #19 of 50

What does this do that Bluetooth audio does not?

 

And yes, almost everyone has a Wifi network at home.. but what if you take your wireless speaker out to the beach and want to play music there? No Wifi network around. This is what that feature would enable.. but... umm... Bluetooth already does this, does it very well, and you can use it IN ADDITION to Wifi.

 

What does this bring to the table other than another proprietary standard? Bluetooth works with pretty much all modern phones.

post #20 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by CodeWarrior View Post

If it's not Wi-Fi then it will have to be BlueTooth. Apple did join as a Board Member June 2011.

It would still be WiFi but rather eliminates the need for a hub. Most likely this is a form of peer to peer networking or as sometimes called adhoc networking. Either that or the audio equipment comes equipped with its on WiFi hub. I really don't see this as a big deal myself, but then again I have nothing in the way of a home network.
post #21 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by bdkennedy1 View Post

I guess Tim's "doubling down" on security hasn't started yet.

More likely this is learned manipulation of the public to create a frenzy about the coming debut. By the time Apple is done all the excutives will have to do is walk on stage and smile leaving the fanboys in a state of orgasm.
post #22 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by unferth View Post

Finally...built-in FM transmitters!

 

I doubt it.
Sounds like it is using Bonjour networking feature of OS X.

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post #23 of 50

Bluetooth works well but does compress audio considerably.  The biggest reason I started using Airplay was because there is no compression over wifi.

post #24 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by zorinlynx View Post

Bluetooth already does this, does it very well, and you can use it IN ADDITION to Wifi.
So can AirdDrop, which this seems to be following.
Quote:
What does this bring to the table other than another proprietary standard? Bluetooth works with pretty much all modern phones.
Longer distances and greater bandwidth comes to mind. Sure, this states only for audio in the article but what do you think comes after that? Video perhaps? I'm not sure that 1080p can sufficiently handled by BT in a real world setting and I've not see anything that stated that BT was more power efficient than WiFI at a high bandwidth capacity.

Since there is no evidence of Apple excluding BT from their devices I think you are taking the wrong stance with your queries.

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post #25 of 50

Nice that Intel's Wireless Display may finally be catching on. This describes how Intel WiDi works. WiDi already lets you mirror your display directly, without devices joining a WiFi network. It uses the WiFi frequencies, but is not a WiFi network.

post #26 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by drblank View Post

This aught to be an interesting concept.

 

Perhaps Apple is starting to think about mesh networks?... just like their mesh network (of sorts) that polls iPhones in traffic to generate real-time traffic data.

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post #27 of 50
Hope it works with SONOS
post #28 of 50
Originally Posted by bdkennedy1 View Post
I guess Tim's "doubling down" on security hasn't started yet.

 

I guess people will never wise up.

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post #29 of 50

Really don't understand this as written-up here.

You can already connect to any Airplay enabled device (Like the Pioneer tuners, etc) without any LAN networking in place. Same as is the case for hooking up to built-in  WiFi enabled printers. No router / repeater / base station is (necessarily) required.

post #30 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by unferth View Post

Finally...built-in FM transmitters!
 

I posted this over at Macrumors around the same time you wrote this:

I seem to remember a year or so ago a story that the WiFi/Bluetooth chip used in the iPhone had FM transceiver capacity which apple weren't using - perhaps they are now. Would be great for the car if so.


 
and posted this link
 

 

Quote:
Broadcom scores a major design win inside the new iPhone 4S with the discovery of the BCM4330 MAC/Baseband/Radio with Integrated Bluetooth and FM Transceiver located in the Murata SW SS1919013 ceramic module. An upgrade from the BCM4329 primarily around the implementation of Bluetooth 4.0, the BCM4330 was first found within the Samsung Galaxy S II.

 

post #31 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post


I'm just curious - how many people who would use this don't already have a WiFi network in their home? I can't believe that the number is very large. Heck, even my 80+ year old mother who is as technophobic as anyone out there has WiFi.

 

I don't have a WiFi network that I can use for this at work.  This would avoid the "problem" of having to dock my iPhone to listen to music.  Presumably.

post #32 of 50
I was setting up Airplay screen mirroring using laptops running mountain lion, an apple TV and a wifi network in a corporate space. The problem i ran into was there was corporate wifi which the users wanted to connect to. The Apple TV was not allowed to connect to the corporate wifi due to IT regulations in the building. So I had an airport express not connected to the internet but used its wifi network for Airplay. This meant that the users could connect to the internet via the corporate wifi, or connect to the airport express for screen sharing but not both at the same time.
If they roll out this feature to include Airplay video mirroring from a laptop then that would solve my problem.
There was a LAN connection, but again due to the draconian IT rules, routers were not allowed either. So only one user could use the LAN connection.
post #33 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by dubston View Post

I was setting up Airplay screen mirroring using laptops running mountain lion, an apple TV and a wifi network in a corporate space. The problem i ran into was there was corporate wifi which the users wanted to connect to. The Apple TV was not allowed to connect to the corporate wifi due to IT regulations in the building. So I had an airport express not connected to the internet but used its wifi network for Airplay. This meant that the users could connect to the internet via the corporate wifi, or connect to the airport express for screen sharing but not both at the same time.
If they roll out this feature to include Airplay video mirroring from a laptop then that would solve my problem.
There was a LAN connection, but again due to the draconian IT rules, routers were not allowed either. So only one user could use the LAN connection.

This is a huge benefit for businesses and schools.

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"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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post #34 of 50
Apple... Just buy Sonos and integrate their system. Much more resistant to interference. Would also be a nice fit from a product perspective.
post #35 of 50

Is it just me, or is Apple eating all the other manufacturer's lunch! :}

 

If we're not careful, Apple will soon be making state of the art laptop enclosures with industry leading high-res., screens, cutting edge battery technology, killer OS, a fantastic suite of free software for photos, movies, music, etc., etc.

 

Oh, wait! :)

 

I'm telling you, (and you heard it here first!) MS, Dell, HP, Best Buy, Sony, RIM, Kodak, Yahoo, Motorola, Nokia, HTC, Qwest, Cell companies, Cable companies are "ice cubes" sitting in the sun! :) My CEO dad always said, "In business, if you're not growing, you're dying! " That has to even more critical in the tech industry!


Edited by christopher126 - 8/28/12 at 9:20pm
post #36 of 50

I thought Airplay would be great until I found out Apple were doing one of their usual greed maneuvers and disabled the Touch and iPhone from being on the receiving end. Back to using DNLA via the Samsung phone.  This also sounds like just a scheme to sell licenses to manufacturers of audio equipment.  Again, more about the money than end user convenience.
 

post #37 of 50

If the subject of this article is intended to mean "without Wi-Fi," it's missing a hyphen: "Wi-Fi-free." Without the hyphen, "Wi-Fi free" means "Wi-Fi without cost." I'm just sayin'...  :-)

 
 
post #38 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post


It would still be WiFi but rather eliminates the need for a hub. Most likely this is a form of peer to peer networking or as sometimes called adhoc networking. Either that or the audio equipment comes equipped with its on WiFi hub. I really don't see this as a big deal myself, but then again I have nothing in the way of a home network.

 

The headline doesn't make sense. Wi-Fi free is different from Wi-Fi Network free.

post #39 of 50

I believe what this new variant of WiFi brings that is not already available with bluetooth is higher bandwidth and fidelity. Possibly because of its roots in cellphone headsets and power constraints the audio profiles for bluetooth are rather modest when it comes to audio fidelity.

post #40 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by jowie74 View Post

The headline doesn't make sense. Wi-Fi free is different from Wi-Fi Network free.

It's still using the same 802.11 protocols but it's an ad-hoc network and a special one at that that can be maintained whilst still connected to a WiFI router. Also, as I stated before connecting two devices is still a network. I don't many people have an idea what ad-hoc means, even many that work in IT. It's just not used often enough to be of importance to many people so I don't see any one term that is ideal but I think AI's wording it fine because it won't affect your current WiFi connection and will appear to the user as a different thing even though it's technically 802.11.

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"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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