Apple to Update AirPlay to Allow Wireless Streaming Without Wi-Fi?

The Telegraph reports that Apple is planning to announce an improvement for its AirPlay audio and video streaming technology during its widely rumored September 12th event. The September 12th event is rumored to be for the revelation of the next generation iPhone. According to people with familiar matter, the so called “AirPlay Direct” tech will require only an iOS device and compatible audio equipment for music streaming. The new AirPlay technology would not need the current need of a W-Fi network to stream music.

Sources familiar with the iPhone-maker’s plans said that Apple wants to improve the AirPlay wireless music streaming technology, which currently requires Airplay speakers and a WiFi network. The new version will require just speakers or a hifi and an iDevice; the iPhone, iPod or iPad would form its own network to allow a direct connection and music playback.

Though details remain vague, it is assumed that AirPlay Direct will create an ad hoc connection with support audio units. Apple’s AirPlay technology allows users to easily stream audio and video using the company’s own encoding tools. Yesterday, it was also reported that the next generation iPhone is not expected to support NFC.

The Telegraph also expects Apple to promote AirPlay Direct as a replacement to the hardware connection on many iPhone/iPod docks. This would allow playback of music wirelessly from device to receiver.

Apple Planning to Add Bluetooth Support for AirPlay

AirPlay logo

You know Apple’s AirPlay? That magical technology everybody loves? Well guess what, it is about to get even better! A Japanese blog Macotakar  (via  AppleInsider)  reports that Apple held a MFI conference in Shezen, China earlier this week. “MFI” is Apple’s    Made for iPod / iPhone / iPad  certification program for accessory manufacturers.

Apparently, during the talk, Apple reportedly revealed that they would be release a new certification chip for  MFi devices that will allow future AirPlay products to connect via Bluetooth 4.0. As of right now, Apple’s AirPlay can only be used via a WiFi network, but the new chip will allow access to iOS devices over AirPlay, Bluetooth, and WiFi. The  current program  seems to be limited to physical dock accessories and specific AirPlay vendors.

In fact, the low power consumption of Bluetooth 4.0 makes it an attractive data transfer  option to WiFi for battery operated devices. MacRumors has a fantastic profile on the possibilities for Bluetooth Low Energy.

Currently,  only the iPhone 4S, Mac Mini and MacBook Air offer  Bluetooth 4.0, while remaining Bluetooth-capable Apple products have chips using version 2.1 of the protocol. Back in June, Apple, the world’s most valuable tech company,  was nominated  to the Bluetooth Special Interest Group board of directors; the organization oversees the development and standards of the wireless technology.

Real Racing 2 First iOS Game with 4-person Split Big Screen Action Via AirPlay

This week, Apple  announced  a brand new version of its iPhone iPhone 4S.    The iPhone 4S features the new A5 processor, a redesigned antenna, an 8-megapixel camera that can shoot 1080p high-definition video, and supports AirPlay mirroring. AirPlay mirroring allows users to stream whatever is on your iPad 2’s or iPhone 4S’s screen to your HDTV via Apple TV.

Today, famous game developer, Firemint, has announced a new feature  for the iOS 5 update to its “Real Racing 2” game that will offer the first 4-player split-screen iOS gaming experience on an HDTV. Firemint will now support, what they call, “Party Plan” mode,  which allows two to four friends to stream a game onto one big screen. Before this update, players had to use the displays of their individual handheld devices.  In addition, the new feature offers higher polygon counts for car models and refreshed 3D graphics.

The new version (1.12) of Real Racing 2 and Real Racing 2 HD will be released just in time for the iOS 5 launch, which will be available on October 12th. Firemint had  previously announced  that Real Racing 2 HD would be the first iOS game to allow console-style wireless big screen gamingby using Apple’s AirPlay Mirroring technology.

I can’t wait to try this out! Who needs gaming consoles anymore? ;)