What eARC/ARC allows is for an accessory linked over HDMI to be the worldwide speaker output for the TV set. This means that all the audio from games consoles, cable boxes, and the like can all be routed through the Apple TELEVISION output with the sound broadcast over the HomePods. With ARC support, the HomePod can be used to output all sound sources on the actual tv, not just when utilizing the Apple TV itself.
This makes the Apple TV + HomePod combo a much more engaging choice for your living-room TELEVISION’s main speaker system.
To make this work, you require a second-generation Apple TV 4K, HomePod speakers, and a suitable TV set that supports HDMI ARC or eARC. You can see complete set up guidelines on Apple’s support page.
Uncommonly for an Apple item, the “Audio Return Channel” function is designated as “beta” in the Apple TELEVISION interface. The greatest catch is that all default audio features on Apple TELEVISION only work with the big HomePod … the HomePod that Apple terminated a couple of a months earlier. The $99 HomePod mini is sadly not supported.
The space gray HomePod offered out practically instantly after the item was stopped, but the Apple Store continues to have stock of the HomePod in white “while products last.”
The inclusion of ARC in this most current generation of Apple TELEVISION reveals that Apple had bigger aspirations for the HomePod as a cordless living-room speaker, before the item was suddenly dropped. Apple’s long-term vision for the living-room remains uncertain. A report from Bloomberg previously this year suggested Apple was checking out a next-generation set-top box including speakers and a FaceTime cam.
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