Disney Plus has updated its suite of Apple apps to add support for the tech giant’s SharePlay feature, letting subscribers watch TV shows and movies with friends and family while connected on a FaceTime video-chat call.
With support for SharePlay, Disney Plus subscribers with an iPhone, iPad or Apple TV can watch content together with up to 32 other people — as long as they are each also Disney Plus subscribers, and are using compatible Apple devices.
Disney Plus’s GroupWatch in-app co-viewing feature, which it rolled out last year, will continue to be available to subscribers worldwide (as long as they are located in the same country). The GroupWatch feature is capped at seven participants or four streams from the same account.
The Disney Plus SharePlay experience is available globally across the streaming service’s entire content catalog from Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars, National Geographic and more, including new titles like Marvel Studios’ “Hawkeye” series and upcoming movies like “Encanto” (premiering Dec. 24 on Disney Plus) and Star Wars series “The Book of Boba Fett” (Dec. 29).
“SharePlay provides another opportunity for personal friends and family around the world to come together and create new memories with their favorite stories on Disney Plus,” Jerrell Jimerson, EVP of product and design for Disney Streaming, said in a statement.
SharePlay sessions can host up to 32 people and offer each participant in the FaceTime call the flexibility of choosing audio and subtitles in the language of their choice. All users in the session must have devices running tvOS 15.1, iOS 15.1 or iPadOS 15.1 or later in order to use the feature.
Apple announced SharePlay this summer and it was originally supposed to be part of the the initial release of iOS 15 (available for iPhone 6 models and later) but the launch was pushed back by several months.
In addition to Disney Plus, SharePlay works with Apple’s own apps and services (including Apple TV and Apple Music). Apple also inked deals with partners including WarnerMedia (for HBO Max), TikTok, Twitch and ViacomCBS (for Paramount Plus and Pluto TV). Netflix and YouTube are among the services that do not currently support SharePlay.