Why watch content on your phone when you can watch it on TV?

Back when the smartphone still a new thing, and HDTVs are a lot less intelligent – ​​oh, about 10 years ago – getting what’s on your phone’s screen to your TV screen usually involves a switch, a cable and a lot of disappointments.

Today, improved wireless standards, smart TVs, streaming media apps, and devices like Roku boxes have all made this easier. Even the phones themselves have gotten better with it. Sure, there are still some hoops to jump through from time to time, especially if you have older hardware, but there’s almost always a way to cast videos, photos, or anything else on your phone to the big screen. .

A word of advice to the wise, though: Test your setup when you have time, in a comfortable environment. Don’t wait until you have an audience of family members or colleagues assembled and impatiently waiting for you to figure out how to make the connection.

Newer settings seem to be the simplest

If you have a big screen TV that was manufactured in the last three or four years and your iPhone or Android phone has been updated, chances are that streaming will be as simple as finding an HDTV set in your phone. your phone install and stream. More New Smart TVs Apple’s AirPlay support or by Google Chromecast-or both. These streaming standards allow you to send video content to your TV or mirror your phone screen. You may have to enable this feature in your TV’s settings for your phone to find the set.

On iPhone, you can access the screen mirror settings by swiping down from the top right of the screen. The icon that looks like two overlapping rectangles tells you what nearby devices are available for streaming. Find your Airplay-enabled TV on it. In apps that support Airplay, such as the Apple TV app or YouTube, look for the streaming icon (a rectangle with a triangle at the bottom) or the AirPlay icon (a circle with a triangle at the bottom). bottom) and select TV.

On an Android phone, you can use the Google Home app to select your TV and send the video to it, or in apps like YouTube, use the Cast button (the rectangle with the rays at the bottom left of the screen). ) to do the same. To mirror your screen to a Chromecast-enabled TV, you can also go directly to Android Settings, select Display, and select Cast Screen.

Make sure your TV’s software is up to date and that your phone and TV are using the same Wi-Fi network. Your TV may not show up as a streaming option if the network settings are turned off or if the TV uses an Ethernet connection but not Wi-Fi.

Important: If you live in an apartment or near other homes or businesses, make sure you’re streaming to the right TV, especially if you’re sharing a Wi-Fi network. You may end up showing your TV show on the wrong device in someone else’s living room.

How to stream to older TVs and set-top boxes

If you have an older TV that doesn’t support standards like AirPlay or Chromecast, the next best thing is to stream to a connected device that works with your TV, such as Apple TV, Amazon’s Fire products, Google’s Chromecast hardware device, or one of Roku’s streaming devices.

Any Apple TV box can do AirPlay, but so can some, such as Roku’s 4K set-top box. For features like screen mirroring or photo sharing on TV, Roku suggests using his own cell phone app, available for iOS and Android devices. Curiously, Roku says that Google phones, such as the Google Nexus and Google Pixel running OS 6.0 or later, cannot mirror the screen to the Roku box.

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