Apple's iOS 8.4 kneecaps Home Sharing, music streaming now limited to Apple TV

Posted:
in iPhone edited August 2015
While Apple introduced an array of new music features with its latest iOS 8.4 update featuring Apple Music, it also quietly nerfed content serving functionality by apparently limiting Home Sharing to videos.




As noted on Apple's Support Communities forum, Home Sharing support for music is no longer available for iOS, leaving iPhone, iPad and iPod owners in search of third-party software solutions for streaming tracks from their iTunes libraries.

Apple updated its official Home Sharing support webpage on June 30 to reflect the change, the same day iOS 8.4 launched. Previously, the site included instructions to enable content sharing through separate iOS Settings menu options, one for music and another for videos.

Launched on iOS in 2011 as part of iOS 4.3, Home Sharing allowed iPhone, iPad and iPod owners to stream digital content from a central computer running iTunes as long as the devices were connected to a common network.

In prior iOS 8.4 beta release notes, Home Sharing is listed under known issues as "not currently available," offering some semblance of hope that it will return in a future build. Home Sharing is still active for desktops running iTunes and Apple TV.

Of course, Apple Music's $14.99 Family Plan partially negates the need for Home Sharing as it offers full access to Apple's music catalog for up to six people, as well as song caching for offline listening. Still, the removal might be an inconvenience for those with extensive collections of tunes not in Apple's catalog. Such cases require users to upload their libraries to iCloud before streaming.

AppleInsider reached out to Apple for comment and will update this article when a response is received.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 76
    ajmasajmas Posts: 579member
    That is annoying, but it never really supported large audio libraries too well.

    Can anyone suggest good alternatives?
  • Reply 2 of 76
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by ajmas View Post



    That is annoying, but it never really supported large audio libraries too well.



    Can anyone suggest good alternatives?

    Physical media... always works for me. When some one in my family wants a particular song, I hand her the CD. Hella easy.

  • Reply 3 of 76
    zabazaba Posts: 226member
    ajmas wrote: »
    That is annoying, but it never really supported large audio libraries too well.

    Can anyone suggest good alternatives?
    Family Sharing?
  • Reply 4 of 76
    sporlosporlo Posts: 143member
    Licensing changes from Apple Music?
  • Reply 5 of 76
    tknulltknull Posts: 33member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Macky the Macky View Post

     

    Physical media... always works for me. When some one in my family wants a particular song, I hand her the CD. Hella easy.




    CD.... what's that?   :p

  • Reply 6 of 76
    ppartekimppartekim Posts: 18member

    I think those were those big round things made of of some sort oil/plastic combo that required some sort of special hardware to make work. Thought I saw some in a antique store a while back.  <img class=" src="http://forums-files.appleinsider.com/images/smilies//lol.gif" />

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by tknull View Post

     



    CD.... what's that?   :p


  • Reply 7 of 76
    yoyo2222yoyo2222 Posts: 144member
    I have previously tried Home Sharing to both an iPad and several iPhones. It worked but barely with my 24K track iTunes library. By the time (5-10 minutes) iOS Music gathered the list of songs shared from my iMac I usually didn't care to listen anymore.

    I'm not going to miss it.
  • Reply 8 of 76
    ecatsecats Posts: 272member

    I suspect it's currently absent because it doesn't work with Apple Music's off-line content. (Pretty sure that's encrypted.)

     

    That's not to say that it won't return since I can see some scenarios* where Apple Music's library won't suffice, but I concede that the large Apple Music catalogue would make the feature redundant for a vast number of it's users.

     

    * Such as: music that is not available on Apple Music, educational environments(e.g. classrooms sharing a unified spoken-resource) and of course content that would never be available: private recordings (e.g. bands), audio notes and so on. 

     

    The good news is that there are so many solutions for media sharing that the mind boggles. There are many open source scripts available for home webservers and it's a standard feature on nearly every NAS that I've come across, many going so far as to directly support the iTunes library database. (NAS = Network attached storage.)

  • Reply 9 of 76
    kkerstkkerst Posts: 330member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by zaba View Post





    Family Sharing?



    *Sigh* That's what I'm suspecting, but I don't need yet another bill. Come on Apple. I understand streaming, but don't run it down my throat by cutting off great features. If this is true, it means they are turning some features into services, and that makes me a sad panda.

  • Reply 10 of 76
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 9,233member

    I've never had a use for this music streaming feature, but can't somebody just have their music on iTunes Match, and then any device that they have will be able to stream that music?

  • Reply 11 of 76
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by tknull View Post

     
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Macky the Macky View Post

     

    Physical media... always works for me. When some one in my family wants a particular song, I hand her the CD. Hella easy.




    CD.... what's that?   :p


     

    This may not be helpful, but CDs look kinda like 45 records... I used to have a changer. When I'd heard all of one side, I'd pull them all off the changer in one movement and flip the stack over and play the other side... Life was good if the music fidelity wasn't. Twenty-three skidoo!!

  • Reply 12 of 76
    hillstoneshillstones Posts: 1,490member

    I rarely Home Shared music from iTunes to an iOS device, but I often Home Shared music from an iOS device to an AppleTV for playback through the stereo.  I would assume that option still works as it always did.  I did Home Share videos from iTunes to my iPad on occasion, so that would still work.  But Apple totally jacked that up with iOS 7.  Worked great under iOS 6, and then became dog slow with 7, and they never fixed it.

  • Reply 13 of 76
    hillstoneshillstones Posts: 1,490member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Apple ][ View Post

     

    I've never had a use for this music streaming feature, but can't somebody just have their music on iTunes Match, and then any device that they have will be able to stream that music?


    Not everyone pays for iTunes Match, and AirPlay should stream all digital content over your own home network without Apple restricting it to what they want you to watch or listen to....but apparently they are.

  • Reply 14 of 76
    plovellplovell Posts: 818member

    This is seriously sucky.

     

    I had iTunes match until my library exceeded 25K "songs". At that point you're toast. You can't buy more capacity, you can't select what "songs" in your library you want in " Match". It's all-or-nothing. After a year - when my library crossed the iRubicon - I was done.

     

    If they're now killing your own [local] playlists and ignoring the music you have in your library - then why on earth would I even consider it?

  • Reply 15 of 76
    zklauszzklausz Posts: 22member

    Plex media server on central computer with iTunes and Plex iOS app.  I have always used this way as it does a much better job of handling large libraries.

  • Reply 16 of 76
    flaneurflaneur Posts: 4,526member
    "Kneecaps"? "Nerfed"?

    Any chance of cutting back on the violence to the language?
  • Reply 17 of 76
    noivadnoivad Posts: 186member
    If this is a cash grab and not an incomplete feature that will return: %u201CWelcome to Rent-A-Lifestyle.%u201D
  • Reply 18 of 76
    anantksundaramanantksundaram Posts: 20,225member
    It was a poorly implemented feature that I did not use much, but to take away a functionality without notice or explanation is a tad weird. And rude.
  • Reply 19 of 76
    schlackschlack Posts: 708member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Macky the Macky View Post

     

    Physical media... always works for me. When some one in my family wants a particular song, I hand her the CD. Hella easy.


     

    I'd have to bust out some seriously old equipment to play a CD in my house. Another 5 yrs and CD players will go the way of the VHS player or the 3.5" disk.

  • Reply 20 of 76
    hillstoneshillstones Posts: 1,490member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post



    It was a poorly implemented feature that I did not use much, but to take away a functionality without notice or explanation is a tad weird. And rude.

    There is an explanation for it...Apple wants to force people to pay for their lousy Apple Music streaming service to get people to rent their music, completely oblivious to the fact that many people have music in their iTunes library that will never be offered on Apple Music.  I have a lot of music from CDs in my library that are not even in the iTunes Store...so it would appear Apple is refusing me to listen to my own music through Home Sharing to an iOS device.  How nice of them.  Thankfully I did not use Home Share in that fashion too often.  If they kill AirPlay to an AppleTV or Apple Express for listening to music to your home stereo, then they will be acting like a bunch of pricks.  They already were total dicks when they removed the ability to share your iPhoto libraries over your own network to share and copy your personal photos from one Mac to another.  That was totally jacked up.

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