Sharing photos from your phone with friends and family can be a challenge when everyone has to hover over your shoulder to see the small screen. Fortunately, technology exists that lets you “mirror” your small phone screen to the larger screen of your TV. In other words, whatever you see on your smartphone screen, you can display on the big screen.
What is Screen Mirroring
Screen mirroring is also referred to as screen sharing. Screen mirroring is when you display the content of a mobile device screen (such as a phone, tablet, laptop or computer) onto a TV screen.
There are two ways to do this:
- Wired connection screen sharing
- Wireless connection screen sharing
While using a wired setup offers a reliable connection, you can also successfully screen share with a wireless setup and get rid of the need for cables.
Wired Screen Mirroring
Wired screen mirroring your smartphone to your TV requires cables. And these cables differ depending on whether you have an Apple, Samsung or other Android phone.
With an Android, you need a mobile high-definition link (MHL) cable. If your TV is MHL compatible, all you have to do is connect the Android phone to your TV with the MHL cable. If your TV is not compatible, you will need to use a mini HDMI or macro HDMI cable instead. Since Apple products are designed to be compatible with other Apple devices, you will need to get a lightning digital AV adapter to connect your device to a TV.
Regardless of the smartphone, wired screen mirroring involves connecting one end of the HDMI, MHL cable or adapter to your smartphone and the other end to your TV. Once the two devices are connected, you can pull up photos that are on your smartphone, open photo apps or social apps, and the pictures will appear on your TV screen.
For Samsung phone users, unfortunately, the MHL cable is discontinued. However, there’s still a way to screen share by wirelessly displaying your photos and content (see next section).
Be sure to check your smartphone’s compatibility before purchasing cables.
Wirelessly Screen Mirroring
Wireless screen mirroring technologies, such as Miracast, or Apple’s AirPlay, let you effortlessly share your phone screen with your TV. Because they are wireless, they do not require an HDMI cable. Miracast technology is built in to Samsung and many Android devices as well as many Windows devices. Make sure to check that your phone is compatible with these wireless technologies.
A wireless display adapter like Actiontec’s ScreenBeam Mini2 uses Miracast technology. This means it is automatically works with Android 4.2 (or newer) and other Miracast-enabled smartphones. And it’s easy. Simply plug the receiver in to your TV. You’ll then connect and be ready share your photos and any other content from your smartphone on your big screen.