Peer to peer Airplay (image 001)

Apple’s current implementation of AirPlay, its media streaming technology, requires a Mac or iOS device to be on the same Wi-Fi network as an AirPlay receiver, which in most scenarios is the Apple TV. While seamless, AirPlay in its current form makes it impossible to use in places where you don’t have access to a local Wi-Fi network.

Feeling your pain, Apple in iOS 8 has implemented zero-configuration peer-to-peer networking between AirPlay devices. This lets you broadcast whatever content from an iPhone, iPod touch or iPad to your Apple TV, even if these devices are not on the same local network…

As AppleInsider notes, the new peer-to-peer AirPlay mechanism is slated to launch for everyone when iOS 8 releases for public consumption this Fall.

With the new system, users will be able to discover and stream to a nearby Apple TV without being connected to a network at all.

A presenter could walk into a conference room, for instance, and broadcast to an Apple TV connected to the projector without going through a complex connection process.

It’s quite possible Apple’s solution is based on the same technology used in AirDrop and a new Yosemite feature called Handoff, which makes it dead simple to seamlessly transition between nearby devices to complete various tasks more easily.

AirDrop/Handoff works by discovering nearby devices via Bluetooth before negotiating a secure Wi-Fi Direct connection for direct data transfers between devices.

From Apple’s description on the iOS 8 Enterprise webpage.

With iOS 8, you can wirelessly connect iPad, iPhone, or iPod touch to Apple TV without first connecting to the organization’s network.

Which means you can present or share your work even if you’re offline or the organization has a complex network.

Notably, Apple’s description doesn’t mention Macs.

OS X Mavericks sports a robust implementation of AirPlay streaming that includes turning your TV into an extended AirPlay Display so we believe it’s quite possible that improved peer-to-peer AirPlay could appear in one of subsequent Yosemite betas.

At any rate, this feature is bound to be popular with teachers and mobile workers who may not necessarily have access to a corporate network, or in situations when the Apple TV itself is on a separate network.

Are you using AirPlay?

And if so, are you looking forward to peer-to-peer AirPlay in iOS 8?

  • Mini Apple Genius

    I never thought I would see this. THANK YOU APPLE!

  • jocastro

    i was wondering when they would do this

  • RarestName


  • Rowan09

    I use my Apple TV all the time and this is very convenient.

  • Technocrz!

    I use Apple tv alot and this rocks.

  • wadrockzz

    One of the reasons I don’t carry my ATV when I travel is because of that exact issue. Now, when I am at a hotel with free wifi, I can connect my phone to wifi, accept the hotel’s terms then stream to a TV. Hopefully, this is how I am understanding this.

    • karma

      With this technology you won’t have to be online at all.

  • Freddy Born

    shouldnt that improve speed and no more/less lag?

    • DOOManiac

      No, because it’s still Wi-Fi.

    • jzack

      i think it will fix the latency and lag issues since it will have a direct connection to our apple tv.. 🙂

  • DOOManiac

    I hope you can secure this so that any joker off the street can’t just put content up on your Apple TV. (For business w/ open lobbies, etc)

    • There’s currently an option to type a password every time you connect to the Apple TV, or type the on-screen code before connecting.

      • TaoKeo

        That prevents people from streaming to you… but there’s nothing preventing me from accidentally streaming something to someone else nearby… people 99% of people aren’t going to password protect or secure their AppleTV.

    • VV

      also there must be a check of Apple ID between Apple TV and your iPhone/iPad.

      This would make Apple TV the best device for home and work with no/few lags without internet connection!

  • jzack

    this will solve most of my problems on airplay! yay! 😀

  • Ozzie

    Movie box and offline Apple TV!!! This is awesome

  • Kenneth Duong

    I can’t wait until they release the new airplay. My honda odyssey has an hdmi port for the tv so I can connect an Apple TV then stream or mirror anything off any idevice without using a MIFI or hotspot.

  • deepdvd

    “…without WiFi” … Wow, what an amazing article title. It’s okay to be misleading and totally wrong as long as you explain yourself in the article, right? Right? Why not just say, “without a WiFi access point?”
    Is it too long for a front page story?

    • Acattia

      Actually, all you need to create an internal, non-internet connected, wifi network that allows the connection of your iOS device an Apple TV is…..airport express! That’s it! Take your airport express. iOS device(s) and your Apple TV to any hotel, house or location with a plug and HDMI capable TV and voila!

  • John Groves

    Will work great for photo sharing on my 93 yr young mom’s tv. No wifi at her place

  • K12 Techie

    AppleTV for teachers? No thanks. They work great unless two are within WiFi range of each other, then the AppleTVs create an adhoc network among them that effectively is a denial of service on the school WiFi.
    Apple TV may be a good residential device, but its certainly not ready for use in a school building.

    • ToeKnee

      Hi, I have not seen this mentioned anywhere. Is it a new problem with Apple TV OS 7? I have managed several dozen Apple TVs deployed in a school without such an issue.

      • K12 Techie

        If the Apple TVs are not within range of each other, its OK. If they are, there is interference with the WiFi access points in the building. The symptom you will see is poor/reduced WiFi performance in the same area. The standard WiFi analyzer apps will not see the radio traffic from the Apple TV. You need a utility that can do spectrum analysis.

      • K12 Techie

        Network Computing has an article that discusses the problem. Search on “Academia to Apple Fix Airplay”

      • ToeKnee

        Thanks for the info, but the article you reference is over two years old and does not mention any wifi interference issues or spontaneous ad-hoc networks being formed, it only addresses the use of Bonjour as a discovery protocol. Apple has now addressed that particular concern by enabling Apple TV discovery via Bluetooth.

        I managed an installation of Apple TVs at a school two years ago, almost six dozen in number, one in every classroom and shared learning space, and we experienced nothing like what you’re describing then or since. If you have any further info, please pass it along.


  • TaoKeo

    It cool except that… as a condo dweller… I now see all my neighbours AppleTVs in my AirPlay list at home… and we can accidentally stream things to each other.