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HomePod will soon have Dolby Atmos support for Apple TV 4K

You'll be able to set a HomePod as the streaming device's default speaker.
Kris Holt, @krisholt
October 15, 2020
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An upcoming home cinema feature will soon enable Apple HomePod to blast Dolby Atmos audio from Apple TV 4K. The feature, which is on the way as part of a future firmware update, will also support 5.1 and 7.1 channel audio (via The Verge). Only the regular HomePod will get the option, however. The new HomePod mini won’t support Atmos.

The home cinema mode will work if you connect a single HomePod to your Apple TV 4K, but you'll likely get a better Atmos spacial audio effect if you can link two HomePod speakers to the streaming device. In any case, a HomePod setup will probably sound better than most built-in TV speakers. 

Amazon's Echo Studio speaker has offered Atmos audio from Fire TV devices since it debuted last year. Fire TV Edition soundbars also support Atmos.

The home cinema feature is just one way that Apple is stitching HomePod and Apple TV 4K more closely together. With tvOS 14.2 beta 3, which Apple rolled out this week for developers and the public to test, there's an option to set HomePod as the streaming box's default speaker. That'll be a welcome quality-of-life update for folks who connect the two devices whenever they’re streaming a show or movie.

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