We’ve seen digital home entertainment take some huge leaps in this past decade alone. One clear instance of this is that we’re now able to stream just about everything onto our mobile devices without much difficulty. All it requires is an internet connection and the right software. One of the technologies that makes this possible is the DLNA.
Curious to know how DLNA can ease streaming for you?
Let’s dig deeper and find out more about DLNA for Android.
What Is DLNA?
DLNA stands for the Digital Living Network Alliance.
DLNA is a not-for-profit organization founded by Sony. It was launched in 2003 and has redefined the standards for inter-device sharing. We all need to share our pictures, videos, and messages with our peers in order to stay in touch. As of now, the DLNA has 200 plus members that control over 9000 devices using its services.
The DLNA is a connection between the devices you have. For instance, it enables you to view a video that’s downloaded on your computer, but on that huge TV screen!
You can also use your stereo to play sounds from your smartphone. With this technology, you can get photos sent from a tablet to a printer without bothering with wires. This sort of device compatibility is truly a great step into the future.
What are DLNA Devices?
Home media servers, PS3s, PCs, Blu-Ray disc players, wireless printers, camcorders, router, Android phones, flatscreens, tablets and many more devices can be called DLNA devices. If you have any of these at home, you’ll probably find that some of them are certified by DLNA.
What is a DLNA Server?
DLNA devices make sure that you’re able to share whatever you wish across your devices. This is made possible through a DMS or Digital Media Server which is located on an Android smartphone or a tablet. The NAS, or Network Attached Storage, can be your Blu-Ray player, television, or some other mobile device.
In short, anything with a DLNA server can serve for a DMS. When the server is in a mobile device like an MP3 player, smartphone, or tablet, we call it a Mobile-DMS, or just M-DMS.
Once you have a DLNA server, your Android phone gets a dual function. It can become an M-DMP or Mobile Digital Media Player. Alternatively, it can turn into an M-DMC or Mobile Digital Media Controller.
The player part is easy enough; you can use your phone to play the content located on the DLNA server. The controller, on the other hand, will locate the content and make it playable on yet another device.
An example may help you understand the phenomenon better. The TV could be the player, and the laptop could be servers if both are DLNA devices. You can then use your DLNA Android as a remote control to locate the laptop’s content and direct it to play on the TV screen.
How To Set Up DLNA for Android
There are actually two types of devices with DLNA, as you can probably gauge from the discussion above. The kind of device that transmits content is called the server. The device that receives the content is called the client.
PCs, tablets, Macs, and even smartphones can all be servers. Larger output devices like televisions are the client devices. Again, in order to transmit and receive video and other content, the device should have DLNA software and should align with the DLNA settings.
Confused on how to get started with the DLNA server? Connect both your devices to the same router and follow the guidelines below:
Make sure every device you’re using has DLNA software installed. You may have to download a free or paid DLNA app on your smartphone.
Install a DLNA software on your computer, tablet, or whatever device you’re using. Some NAS devices may have this software pre-installed.
After the software or app installation, go to the tab for sharing. Select the content (tracks, images, audio, and video) that you want to view on other DLNA devices.
When you see the DLNA section on the TV screen, look for the software for the DLNA server on the connected devices. You can then select “Smart TV Interface” or the “DLNA/Sharing” remote button if there’s one.
If the DLNA server can’t be found, you may have to select some other software for the server. Try another app that would do the trick.
Once everything is connected and the devices recognize each other, you can enjoy your smart DLNA world!
Streaming Content to Smart TVs With DLNA
There are several advantages of having a Smart TV rather than a regular one. You can connect to the internet with the smart technology and even stream content right from your mobile devices.
If you buy a Smart TV today, it would probably be equipped with DLNA technology. You probably already own a smartphone or a tablet, plus an Internet router.
With a bit of fiddling, you can easily connect the NAS to the router and start streaming to your television screen for easy and fun viewing!
Connecting Devices to the DLNA Network
For viewing on your TV through DLNA software, connect all the devices to the same router as mentioned above. You can accomplish this by changing the Network Settings on each device. Search for a wireless network, and connect to the same one each time. This should preferably be your home network.
You may have to enter the Wi-Fi password separately on each device if you haven’t done so before. If you’re using a Smart TV, a LAN cable could connect it directly to the router.
Loading DLNA Apps on Smartphones
If you need to stream content using a smartphone, install a DLNA app on it. You can choose the app that works best for you. Many users find BubbleUPnP the best one for their needs. This is just one of many free DLNA apps on the Play Store. Before downloading, however, check to see whether you already have a DLNA app pre-installed on your phone.
After you download and install BubbleUPnP, you’ll see four menus. These will be labeled:
- Now Playing
First off, select the device that will receive your content. This is the client device. Once you click the Devices option, you’d get a selection of client devices, from which you’d select the Smart TV. From this list, you’ll also choose the server devices, or those that have the content you want to stream. This could be a handheld device such as a smartphone.
Media Content Streaming on TV
After choosing the client and server devices, choose the content you want to stream. If you’re using an app like BubbleUPnP, you’ll automatically be able to view images, sound tracks, and videos in their own separate folders.
Select the file you want to view on the client device. Once selected, the file will start streaming to the Smart TV through the app. You’ll also be able to create playlists or simply choose on media file on the server device.
In fact, the controller device can be used like a remote control! For example, the volume keys on your smartphone can be utilized to control the volume on your Smart TV. Using the same device, you can skip certain files, stream photos, and view whatever you like.
You may also be able to find a Smart TV that doesn’t require a router connection. As long as your smartphone supports Miracast, you can stream content directly to the Smart TV. With such technology, Wi-Fi Direct is all you need for streaming.
It works somewhat like Bluetooth, where devices should be near each other. Perfect for a TV lounge, living room, or bedroom! What’s more, Miracast also enables your phone screen to be displayed on the TV.
You can use your apps, watch movies, play your games, and do whatever you want on that giant screen!
Tried using DLNA for Android already? We’d love to know your experience. Tell use all about it in the comment section below!