Miracast: Everything You'd Like to Know

Mobile devices (laptop, tablets and smartphones) are great when you are on the go, but wouldn't it be great if you could mirror the content of your mobile devices on a bigger screen?

It sounds technically complicated and expensive, but it is really easy and affordable to get it up in running. In general, there are two approaches to this:

  1. Physically establish a connection between your mobile device and TV by using a HDMI cable from the output connector of your mobile device to the input connector of your TV. Alternatively, use a VGA cable if you are working with older machines.
  2. Wirelessly establish a connection between your mobile device and TV by using a mirroring solution e.g. Amazon Fire, Chromecast and Roku.

As you can see, you do not need to spend a fortune on the latest smart TV to watch Netflix, Sky Go and BBC iPlayer on a bigger screen. Both HDMI (or VGA) cable and mirroring solutions are much affordable.

One of the best options out there is Miracast and this article will give you all the information that you need or want to know about it.

Part 1: What is Miracast?

Miracast is a solution that mirrors the screen of smartphones, tablets, laptops and desktop computers without the need of any physical connections via HDMI cables. It was built using WiFi Direct technology that allows two devices to establish a direct, peer-to-peer wireless connection without the presence of a wireless router. Think of Miracast as a wireless HDMI cable. You are able to use it across multiple platforms because it is a non-internet protocol solution (examples of internet protocol solutions: AirPlay and Chromecast). This versatility has made Miracast one of the go-to mirroring solutions in the market.

Part 2: Software and Hardware Requirements for using Miracast

Is there a catch when it comes to Miracast? Like any other third-party solution, of course, there is: both receiver and adapter must support Miracast.

If you are thinking of buying a new device or TV, look for one that supports Miracast in its product description. It is a little complicated when you intend to use older devices in terms of its software and hardware because obviously, Miracast will have some requirements.

Software

To be able to use Miracast on your device, you may need to upgrade to a newer operating system e.g. Windows 8.1, Windows Phone 8.1, at least Android 4.4 and at least BlackBerry 10.2.1. If you are planning to use a computer, it will either need at least a Windows 7 or a Linux version that supports WiFi Direct.

Please remember that OS X and iOS do not support Miracast.

Hardware

In terms of hardware, laptops and tablets that run on Intel's fourth- and fifth-generation Core processors and has a 7260 wireless chip is required if you want to use Miracast. If your laptop has a third- or fourth-generation APU, it will be able to support Miracast via AMD's Screen Mirror technology.

Most Android device manufacturers support Miracast because Android is pretty much uniform.

You May Like: AirPlay Mirroring without An Apple TV >>

Part 3: How to Use Miracast?

Step 1

Before anything else, you need to do is check the compatibility of the devices you have---you can check the list of Miracast-supported devices here. If your TV supports Miracast, enable Miracast. Ensure that your Miracast TV stick or TV box is plugged in properly into the HDMI port and that it is connected to a power source securely. Go to your settings menu and set up for wireless display---most Miracast-supported device have a pre-installed Miracast app that you can just launch to setup a connection with the source of input.

how to use miracast

Step 2

Enable Miracast on the source device e.g. smartphone, tablet or laptop. Depending on the type of device, follow one of the following steps.

Windows

It is really easy with Windows-powered laptops---swipe open the Charms bar and tap on the following: Devices > Project > Add a wireless display.

how to use miracast

A "Searching for devices" message will pop up while it scans for your Miracast-supported adapter. Once it has manifested available devices, click on the adapter you want to connect to. You will be asked to enter a password to verify that it is a secure network if your adapter is password protected; otherwise, you will simply be connected to Miracast.

how to use miracast

If your laptop's screen is not mirrored instantly, wait a few minutes to configure the Miracast display. By default, the resolution and aspect ratio will follow the original settings. If it looks disproportionate, adjust it accordingly on your TV.

Android

On your Android device (at least Android 4.4), go to the settings menu and find the Display option---find and tap Wireless display.

how to use miracast on android

Toggle the Wireless display button to allow your device to find and connect with any wireless display---it will automatically scan for nearby Miracast adapters. Once the list finished populating, tap on the name of your Miracast adapter. Your Android device will either be automatically connected or you will be prompted to key in a password to connect to your adapter.

how to use miracast on android

It should then mirror your Android device's screen.

Also Read: Full Guide to Use Miracast to Stream Your Windows 7/8 Screen on TV >>

Part 4: Top 3 Issues of Miracast

Although Miracast is a great tool to use to project the content on your device to a TV, it does come with its issues.

The first issue that you may face during Miracast-TV connection is overscan. This is a HDMI-input issue that most TVs have---they tend to amplify the image on the smaller screen when projected on the bigger screen. If you face this problem, go into your TV's options menu and set it to a dot-by-dot display output instead of the stretch or zoom options.

Secondly, if you are using a device that runs on Windows 10, you may experience the following issues when it comes to using Miracast: network connectivity issues, degraded audio output, jittery video output and hanging off the wireless display. To solve this issue, install the Microsoft Windows 10 Threshold 2 (TH2) that was released in November 2015. To be safe, make sure you update your device's BIOS, Video and Wireless drivers too.

Last but not least, the third top issue is that it does not work with supported Android devices. Should this happens to you the first thing you need to check if you are using custom ROMs. If you are, chances are you have tempered with the settings that enables Miracasto to work properly. Therefore, revert back to your manufacturer's official build to solve this problem.

Also Read: How to Miracast Mirror Android Screen Wirelessly >>

We hope that this article has answered what is Miracast and how you can use Miracast-TV to project media content on a larger screen. It is an awesome technology but still very new; therefore, it can be clunky and buggy at times but it is still evolving to become a better version of itself each day so that one day, we can achieve total wireless HDMI connectivity without much issues. Until then, you will need to check that your Miracast adapter is able to officially and explicitly supports the device you want to cast it too. It is a lot of work but it is necessary. Good luck trying it out and let us know if you have any tips.

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