7

Mirror Android To PC or TV – 6 Easy Solutions

Posted by William Sattelberg on April 17, 2018

Picture this: it’s a Friday evening at your house. You have a few friends over, maybe a pizza, and you’re looking to watch a movie on your television. You have a Smart TV, but the app is so slow and buggy, you decide it’s just easier to hook your computer up to your television like a monitor and play Netflix off of your laptop. You grab your laptop and your charger and you drag it out into your living room. Of course, you can’t find your HDMI cable, and the one you do find seems to be broken on one end. Twenty-five minutes later, the pizza’s cold, everyone’s on their phone, and the night’s hit a bit of a slog. Even after you get the laptop plugged into your TV, you’re stuck by a computer for the rest of the night, moving the mouse, hitting play and pause, and controller the volume. What a mess.

All of this could have been avoided if you’d just set your Android phone or tablet up to wirelessly mirror to your computer or television. Instead of dealing with chargers, wires, headaches, and troubleshooting, you can beam content straight from your phone to your entertainment system, streaming Netflix, Hulu, YouTube, music, and any other number of entertainment sources. This type of wireless mirroring can even be handy for displaying your family photos, home videos, and any other media you might have saved on your phone or tablet. And if you’re in the conference room, mirroring can make presentations a snap, so your focus is on the presentation at hand instead of the technology in front of you.

Though mirroring your phone has traditionally required some form of computer or laptop device hooked up to your television to make the entire system work, the last few years have made the entire system a whole lot easier. From Google’s Cast standard to other similar wireless setups, mirroring your Android phone or tablet has never been easier. Let’s take a look at our favorite apps and setups for mirroring your phone to a computer or television.

Everyone else

Mirror is another app developed by Koush, formerly at ClockworkMod, which is essentially an earlier version of the same kind of idea and principle behind Vysor. Mirror features a bit of a different interface, and acts as an entirely different way to stream your phone. Instead of relying on a desktop client like Vysor, Mirror allows you to stream your phone to a Fire TV device, Chrome window (using a Chrome web app), Apple TV, or even another Android device automatically. Streaming your device to a Chrome display or Fire TV relies on you installing Koush's Allcast Receiver, while streaming your device to an Apple TV works automatically, without any additional setup. Mirror is truly built around the idea of screen recording, and isn't quite as fully-featured as something like Vysor, but it's also entirely free with a watermark on your recording. If you hate the watermark on your mirrored display, it can be removed with a single in-app purchase. While Vysor's own wireless streaming service requires the use of a desktop or Chrome app, Mirror uses the streaming box you already own, making it a great addition for owners of an Apple TV or Amazon Fire Stick.

AirDroid is better known for its wireless file transfer system and being included with a bunch of different Chromebooks, including some Samsung devices. The app can allow you to transfer your files wirelessly between Windows, Macs, and Chrome OS devices, and can even let you act on notifications on your Android device right from your PC. Beyond that, though, AirDroid also offers the ability to mirror your device's screen to your computer when used in conjunction with either the desktop or web companion app. Called "AirMirror," the app fully supports all rooted and non-rooted devices alike. As we saw with Vysor, you can use your keyboard and mouse to control your mirrored device on your computer or on a projector, making this ideal for the board room. AirDroid is a free app, and its free tier is far more full-featured than what we saw from Vysor, though to take advantage of everything offered by AirDroid, you'll want to spring for their premium plan, available for either $1.99 a month or $19.99 a year.

In theory, Windows Connect should be the perfect solution for anyone looking to connect their phone to their laptop or desktop computer for perfect mirroring. It's a WiFi-direct receiver that makes it easy to turn your laptop's screen into something that can easily sync with your phone, and it started shipping almost two years ago on all Windows 10 devices running the Anniversary Update (which, at this point, is all of them). Unfortunately, Windows Connect cannot so easily sync with modern devices today, thanks to the lack of Miracast support in newer phones and tablets. Miracast is a standard from the WiFi Alliance that effectively works as HDMI over WiFi, making it ideal for smartphones, but as Google has placed emphasis on the Chromecast line of products, they've moved away from including Miracast support in Android. If your phone does support Miracast, you can start using Windows Connect by opening the Connect app on your PC and enabling wireless displays in the settings of your phone. A list of supported Miracast Android devices can be found here.

Finally, if you happen to own a Samsung device like the Galaxy S9 or the Galaxy Note 8, you'll want to update your Flow application and download the Windows 10 client to get the app up and running on your device. Samsung Flow just added the ability in a recent update to cast from your phone or tablet to your computer. Flow now uses Samsung Smart View, which means you can download the client for your Windows laptop or desktop computer to mirror your Galaxy device from your hand to your computer. Though Smart View has existed for televisions for quite some time, the roll out of Smart View support for Samsung Flow is recent, and means you don't need nearly as many apps as you might have needed in the past. To get started, download or update the Samsung Flow app from the Play Store and download the Windows client for Flow here. As long as your Samsung device is running on Android 6.0 or higher, you'll be able to mirror directly to your PC wirelessly with few issues. Unfortunately, non-Samsung users are left in the cold on this one.

7 thoughts on “Mirror Android To PC or TV – 6 Easy Solutions”

vid2mp3 says:
Thanks a lot for sharing this informative blog. I am new to this field, and thus i am hoping for the similar post so that i can enhance my knowledge. Thank you.
Reply
Nnya says:
Hi TechJunkie, is AirDroid an option for me to access a non-rooted phone with cracked glass (white screen with black sections, no usable display)?? Is it possible that the “mirror” would show what would be visible if glass was intact? I can unlock it from experience, and even get into settings, but can’t manage to set up Bluetooth to transfer files to another phone. Definitely cannot tell what USB debugging status is. Any advice??
Reply
David Scully says:
Solition 1 is not an answer !you cannot cast an android screen to a pc using the method described, which by the way is what the heading suggests,badly written misinformed articles like this one are the scurge of the internet.Great advert for chromecast though.
Reply
Alan says:
Solution#2 It says searching for devices and just it does that and nothing pops up
Reply
Ayo says:
Nice and really insightful. I have a product demo coming up and will totally try these app out. Thanks
Reply
Tommy says:
Hi ! Option number 2 doesn’t seem to work on my galaxy s7 edge and laptop. On the phone app, the computer doesn’t show up and is ”searching for devices” indefinetely. Please help !
Thanks
Reply
William Elcock says:
Hi Tommy, please make sure both devices are connected to the same network. If you are using a VPN on one device that may cause an issue as well.
Reply
Helana says:
Hello,
Great article. I was wondering if Airdroid requires both the devices to be connected onto the same WiFi network? My grandmother’s nexus 7 2013 is rooted but she is living abroad. She had a 3/4G data connection, Wanted to help her update her Whatsapp APK version that has become obsolete.
Thank you
Reply
William Elcock says:
Hi Helena, you can connect without being on the same WiFi network.
Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *