I can’t count the number of times when I’m watching a movie or show on my phone or laptop and think “I wish I was watching this on TV.”
Or I have a slideshow I need to present and realize my phone’s tiny screen just won’t cut it.
Fortunately, there are ways for you to see your Android screen on a much bigger display. And no, it does not require you to upgrade your phone and get something with a larger screen (although there’s nothing stopping you from doing that either!)
If you want the short and easy answer, you can buy the ever-popular Chromecast, which is a great and extremely easy-to-use device.
Chromecast isn’t your only option though. If you’re looking for other alternatives, read on.
What is Casting, Anyway?
Let’s talk about what casting is, first. It’s basically what I described above, mirroring your Android phone’s display on another screen—in this case, a TV.
This means you would be able to watch movies, see pictures, or even use apps from your phone on a much larger display.
Android Mirror Cast, Casting, or screen mirroring, used to be such a tedious process, often involving rooting your phone. Now it’s much easier, as your phone likely already has built-in casting capabilities.
Let’s explore the many ways you can take advantage of this functionality.
Method 1: Native Casting
As long as your phone is running Android 4.2 or higher, you can cast its screen to most smart TVs, without the need for Chromecast or any external devices.
Just make sure that your TV comes equipped with Miracast, a wireless standard that establishes a secure connection between two devices without having to connect to the internet.
It would be ideal if your Android device and TV has the same manufacturer (LG, Samsung, and Amazon, for example).
The screencast feature is readily accessible on your Android phone’s Quick Settings tray. Here’s how you can access it:
Go to the Quick Settings tray.
Swipe down on your phone to access your notification drawer. One more swipe down and you can see some Quick Settings buttons.
Look for the screencast feature. On the Samsung Galaxy Note 9, for example, the screencast feature is called Smart View.
Look for your Smart TV
Once enabled, you will be shown a list of compatible devices near you. If nothing’s showing up, make sure that your devices are connected to the same WiFi network first.
Select your smart TV on the list. After a few seconds, your TV will then mirror your phone’s display.
A message will be shown in your notification tray indicating that you’re casting your screen. When you’re ready to stop mirroring your display, you can turn off the feature through this notification.
With Miracast, your TV can mirror your phone’s display and sound in all its HD and 4K glory. Just remember that it can’t pick up any video sources from the web, so your phone would have to be turned on all the time. It’s not exactly the best for your battery usage.
Method 2: Casting Apps
In case you run into any problems with native casting, you also have the option to download apps that make screen mirroring between your phone and TV possible.
As long as both your phone and smart TV have the app installed, you’re good to go.
Method 3: Streaming Devices
Media streaming devices have definitely brought Android into the living room. You just plug it into your TV and voila, you can stream and watch all kinds of content. This is a great alternative for those who don’t own a smart TV.
While I’m listing ways in which you can cast your phone display specifically without Chromecast, there are other streaming devices that you should consider.
Roku Streaming Stick
The pioneer when it comes to streaming devices, Roku offers an easy way for you to see your Android screen on a bigger screen. The stick itself has built-in screen mirroring options; all you have to do is enable it.
- As always, make sure both devices are connected to the same wireless network first. Then, plug the Roku streaming stick on your TV.
- On the Home page, locate Settings and select that. Go to Systems, then Screen Mirroring. From here, you can choose your preferred connection method.
- To enable casting on your Android device, follow the steps indicated in the Native Casting section above.
Amazon Fire Stick
Unfortunately, the 3rd generation Fire TV Stick 4K no longer supports native screen mirroring. If you’re using any of the previous generations though, you’re still good.
- Before anything else, make sure your phone and TV are connected to the same WiFi network.
- To start casting, press and hold the Home button on the Fire Stick remote. This will enable the mirroring option.
- To do the same on your Android device, follow the steps listed in the Native Casting section above.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do I know if my device has screencasting capabilities?
Is it running 4.2 or higher? Was it built in the last few years? If yes, then you should be able to do some screen mirroring with compatible devices.
What is the use of cast screen in Android phones?
Casting your phone’s screen onto a bigger display can let you do a number of things: showing photos and videos to a group, using your phone as a remote, and giving demos and presentation. Generally, you have more screen real estate to do things you normally do on your phone.
Why can’t I connect my Android device to my TV?
You might have compatibility or connectivity issues. Try any of these solutions.
Bigger Screen, Better Experience
While phone screens are bigger and better, there are still benefits to using a much larger screen like a television. Casting or screen mirroring makes this pretty easy and achievable, as long as you have the right devices.
Chromecast is definitely a big player when it comes to mirroring your phone’s display on a TV. In case you’re not fond of using the device or just want something else, at least you have some sound and reliable alternatives.
And besides, if all else fails, you can also connect your phone to the TV using good ‘ol cables.
Have any other screencasting methods in mind? Leave a comment below!