So, what is Miracast? In simpler words, it’s an ‘HDMI over Wi-Fi’.
A great relief! Less tangled-up wires around the house!
First introduced by Wi-Fi Alliance, in 2012, it was a revolutionary technology for android users.
Mirroring screen wirelessly is definitely a game-changer. Smartphones and tablets escaped from lap to the living room HD display due to wireless HDMI ‘Miracast’.
Miracast gained huge popularity because of NetGear, Asus, and Belkin—the famous names. They launched their own Miracast -enabled devices. Miracast was integrated into android devices since then.
However, Miracast works easily with ‘Miracast-supported devices’ that started showing up in mid-2013.
Definitely, Miracast is a smart screen-mirroring technology, offering HD display and a capacity to share videos, presentations, files, etc.; anything you’d want to place on the big screen or share between devices!
Now in 2020, Miracast isn’t alone in the race because Chromecast was released in 2013. Chromecast is Google’s video sharing device that is conveniently controlled from iOS and Android devices (More on that later).
Let’s dig deeper into how Miracast can make your life easier:
Why Do I Need Miracast?
Miracast is more than a mere video-sharing interoperable between devices. It’s a screen-mirroring technology, shifting the display from smaller screen to bigger one.
Miracast works by connecting two Wi-Fi supported devices such as television dongle and any Android device through Wi-Fi direct.
The great thing about Miracast is that it is not merely a medium of entertainment—simply allowing you to share videos.
Rather you can play your favorite mobile game on the big screen. You can share important files and presentations on the bigger screen for meetings. And as the setup process is quite easy, anyone can share their content.
In educational setups, Miracast is as functional as any projector with a bundle of HDMI cables for bigger displays.
However, during screen sharing, you need to keep your phone or laptop screen turned on. As the content is being shared by mirroring your device’s screen, your device battery gets drained in the process. Therefore, keep your device plugged in or fully charged for a smooth screen-sharing experience.
What about the quality of video? Is it effected?
Not at all, Miracast screen-mirroring technology supports 1080p HD video resolution along with 5.1 surround sound. This ensures that the quality of HD movie you wish to watch on the big screen isn’t effected.
Miracast is an all-in-one solution for businesses and home users. From video conferencing to sideshow display and from high-definition videos to mobile games; it lets you stream anything you want from your tiny mobile screen.
Moreover, Miracast is a highly functional option for android and smart TV owners. Because, unlike Apple users, they do not have the Airplay option to connect the Apple devices.
Do I Need Miracast Adapter? How Much Does it Cost?
Devices having a Wi-Fi connection and an integrated Miracast feature in the operating systems can easily implement Miracast protocol.
The recently launched Smart TVs later than 2014 and android devices later than 2013 have the Miracast feature integrated.
Smart TVs manufactured by Panasonic, Amazon, LG, Toshiba, and Sony have integrated Miracast to their HD TVs since then.
As for the android devices, Android supported Miracast initially in Android 2.4 and Android 5. However, later Google dropped Miracast support in Android 6 version.
Apple OSX and iOS do not support Miracast. Instead, iPhone users have their own AirPlay technology requiring Apple TV to mirror the display between the apple devices.
On the software end, Miracast is supported in both Windows 8.1 and Windows 10.
So, if your TV does not support Miracast, you need to buy a Miracast adapter.
You can look to a variety of Miracast receiver dongles such as Belkin’s Miracast Video Adapter, Asus’s Miracast Wireless Display Dongle, YEHUA’s Miracast Wi-Fi Dongle, Microsoft’s Wireless Display Adapter and last of all Anycast M4.
Adapters can be plugged into the USB or HDMI port of your TV to support Miracast screen-mirroring. The device will then become a wireless receiver.
But, how much these Miracast dongles cost you? Estimated cost of these adapters is around $40 to $100.
At least, you don’t need the HDMIs to share screens!
Does Miracast Use Wi-Fi Or Bluetooth?
When you connect your phones or laptops through Bluetooth, it is known as peer-to-peer connection. But, that’s not the case with Miracast.
Miracast doesn’t require a wireless router. The core of this technology revolves around Wi-Fi direct standard. That means two devices supporting Wi-Fi can connect with each other through Miracast.
Therefore, Miracast doesn’t need an internet connection to stream data from your device to the big screen.
Miracast uses WPA2 encryption to secure the connection, so that the protected content like Netflix and Blu-ray can freely flow through it.
Quick Tutorial How To Use Miracast In Win 10?
If your PC or laptop had an integrated Windows 8.1. or Windows 10, then it must have the Miracast support. However, if you have updated your windows from Windows 7 to Windows 10, Miracast may not be supported by your device.
Well, in that case, simply buy a Miracast wireless adapter to be plugged in the USB or HDMI port for setting it up.
Before you start screen mirroring, make sure that you have updated the Miracast driver for it to work smoothly.
If you haven’t, you can set it up by following these steps:
Step 1: Download the Intel Driver Update Utility Tool from the Intel.com.
Step 2: Once the download is complete, search for the .exe file to run.
Step 3: Now, click the ‘Install’ button for it install the drivers.
Step 4: Last of all, select the ‘Launch’ tab. From there, you can select the ‘Start Scan’ tab. This will scan your entire system for available drivers. Here, you will find Miracast and other drivers that need to be updated.
Now that you have updated Miracast, you can start mirroring the screen on your HDTV by following these simple steps:
Step 1: Plug in the Miracast adapter in the TV if it doesn’t have Miracast integrated into it. Select the ‘HDMI’ channel.
Step 2: Open the ‘Start Menu’ on your Windows, click on the ‘Settings’.
Step 3: Select ‘Devices’ and then choose ‘Connected devices’. Here you will click ‘Add a device’. The windows will search all the nearby devices available for display. In a few seconds, you can see your TV option that you can choose. Now, enjoy the computer display project on the big screen, your smart TV.
Quick Tutorial On How To Use Miracast On Android Phone
If you android supports Miracast; then, it’s super-easy to connect the two devices.
However, In case your TV did not support Miracast, you plug in the receiver dongle in the HDMI port.
Once plugged in, turn on your TV. Microsoft adapter may require you the press the button located on the dongle. It can take the adapter about 90 seconds to boot up. Then, your TV screen will display the option to connect to a nearby device.
Shifting onto the Android, here’s what you need to do:
Step 1: Go to the ‘Setting’ menu and choose the ‘Display’ option.
Step 2: Then, select the ‘Wireless display’ option. Once, it’s turned on, it will scan the nearby devices. Choose the Miracast adapter name or your smart TV name that pops up.
Step 3: You may be prompted for a PIN code on the TV display. Add it in and you are all set to watch your favorite videos, images, etc. on your HDTV.
Quick tutorial on how to use Miracast on iPhone?
Miracast is not supported by Apple iOS or OS X software. Instead, Apple owners can opt for AirPlay that needs an Apple TV connection only.
However, Apple users have the option to use ‘Chromecast’ to easily share videos between screens.
What’s the Difference between Chromecast and Miracast?
Chromecast launched by Google is another wireless technology to connect two devices wirelessly. Simply connect the Chromecast dongle, which costs around $35, into your TV and start streaming videos.
Chromecast is a particular device while Miracast is a protocol supported by various devices.
Although both appear to be performing a similar function, but there are a few differences.
Firstly, Chromecast only allows multimedia streaming across devices, while Miracast lets you mirror your screen for presentation, file sharing, etc.
Secondly, As Chromecast is not mirroring the screen, it is simply using your mobile device as a remote control to pull multimedia content from the Internet and display on the big screen.
But, with smart TVs, the need for Chromecast seems a bit limited. Because video streaming, Netflix, YouTube, and browsing options are already up there on the Smart HDTVs now.
Miracast doesn’t lose its purpose yet because it mirrors your smaller screen; therefore, you can put on the bigger display anything you wish to share.
Lastly, Chromecast allows you the freedom to control the multimedia streaming through your phone. But, with Miracast, the screen is mirrored onto the big screen. Therefore, the scope for controlling it is limited in a few aspects.
Based on their use, users choose Miracast or Chromecast as both are great options in their own arenas.
Summing it all up, Miracast is a convenient solution over HDMIs. Miracast’s wireless display is a fair deal for people struggling with the hunt for right type of cables or connecters.
Even if your device doesn’t support Miracast, the Miracast adapters are available in affordable prices. This lets you make any TV a Miracast-supported TV.
The HD display further resolves the trouble of ‘awful video displays’ for presentations, video streaming, etc.
For educationists, presenters and entrepreneurs, this is a convenient option to share information securely between screens without a Wi-Fi.