How to connect your iPhone or iPad to a TV or a computer monitor

How to Connect iPhone and iPad to TV
There are moments when the screen on an iPhone or iPad just isn't big enough – when you want to show off your photos to your friends, when you want to enjoy a movie to the fullest, or when you want to do a presentation in front of your colleagues, to give a few examples. At the same time, we're often near a bigger screen, such as the one on a TV or your computer's monitor. The solution? Hook up your iPhone or iPad to the larger display, of course! Here's how you do that.

Method 1: Using Apple's official Lightning to HDMI adapter

First, the good news: iPhones and iPads have video output capabilities and mirroring support baked right into them. As for the bad news, taking advantage of these capabilities requires the purchase of additional hardware, such as the special Lightning to HDMI adapter from Apple. These retail for $49 apiece, which is quite a lot, especially when you take into account that an HDMI cable is not included. You have to either buy one separately or borrow the cable used with your receiver, set-top box, or video game console. Note that you need to use the 30-pin to HDMI adapter, priced at $39, in case you have an older iPhone or iPad model.

Also, using a Lightning to HDMI adapter to bring your media to the big screen has a number of downsides. First and foremost, the connection is wired instead of wireless. Sure, you're not consuming any of your Wi-Fi's bandwidth, but you'll likely miss the convenience of flipping through movies from the comfort of your couch. Furthermore, tests have shown that the video adapter outputs video at resolution of 1600 by 900 pixels, not 1080p – good enough, but not quite matching the native pixel count of most modern TVs.

But if you choose to go with this method anyway, just go ahead and hook up your adapter to your device. Use an HDMI cable to connect your iPhone or iPad to your TV via the adapter. Make sure you've switched your TV to the input where your phone or tablet is connected. Within seconds, your device will automatically start sending video and audio data to your TV. Note that the image projected on your TV's screen will be slightly delayed. This lag is caused by the adapter converting the signal and is not a malfunction.

Apple's adapter also lets you connect your iPhone or iPad to a computer monitor with HDMI input. And if using HDMI is not possible for whatever reason, Apple is offering a Lightning to VGA adapter ($49) as well. It is compatible with the great majority of TVs and computer monitors, but it can't transmit any audio.

The Lightning Digital AV Adapter is available on the Apple Store and at major retail stores.

Method 2: Using Apple TV and AirPlay

You've heard of the Apple TV, haven't you? It is Apple's $99 set-top box that lets you enjoy movies and music on your TV's big screen. Also, it comes with this cool feature called AirPlay. With its help, you can mirror the screen of your iPhone or iPad right onto your TV's display – wirelessly, over your home's Wi-Fi network.

Enabling AirPlay mirroring over Apple TV is a pretty straightforward process. You just have to make sure that both your iDevice and your Apple TV are connected to the same Wi-Fi network. Once that's taken care of, an AirPlay icon will show up in your Control Center. Tap it, select the Apple TV and enable mirroring. VoilĂ ! Your device's screen will now show up on your TV.

As the case is with the HDMI adapter, there might be a slight lag between what's shown on your phone or tablet and your TV, but it shouldn't be as prominent.

Apple TV is available on the Apple Store and at major retail stores.

Method 3: Using Reflector

So, let's say that you want to enjoy using your iPhone or iPad onto a larger screen, such as the one on your computer, but neither of the aforementioned methods suit your needs or budget. Well, there's a third option – using an application called Reflector. In a nutshell, it turns a computer, be it a Mac or a PC, into an AirPlay receiver. The software works wirelessly, over Wi-Fi, or via USB, in case your computer does not have a Wi-Fi adapter. Overall, it is a pretty cool app, even though it is kind of pricey at 13 bucks, with only a 7-day trial.

To use Reflector wirelessly, just get the app from its website and launch it on your computer. Note that a window may not pop up at all, but an icon in your app tray should definitely be present, indication that Reflector is up and running. This is your cue to reach for your iPhone or iPad and enable AirPlay from Control Center. If the AirPlay button is not present, make sure that your computer and phone or tablet are onto the same wireless network. Using Reflector over USB is just as easy – just wire up your device to your computer and launch the app. Then you'll find the AirPlay button in your Control Center. Note that if your desktop computer is wired to the Wi-Fi router your iDevice connected to, Reflector should still work over the air.

To get Reflector for PC or Mac, click here.

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About Abula Gist

'Tunde Ojedokun is an Editor working for Lappyphone, he loves technology. You can't see him without a gadget. .


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