How To Use AirPlay To Stream Content from Your Device

Do you want to know how to use AirPlay? You’re in luck, as we will cover how to set up AirPlay, how to use AirPlay with different devices, and how to troubleshoot common problems. This article can serve as a resource whether you are just starting with AirPlay or looking for a more comprehensive breakdown.

What Is AirPlay?

AirPlay is a feature that allows you to stream audio and video content from your iOS device to an Apple TV or other compatible receiver wirelessly. You can watch movies and TV shows from your iPhone or iPad display on your big TV screen, listen to music from your iPod Touch on your home stereo, and view photos from your Mac on your TV using AirPlay.

When an AirPlay receiver is detected on your network, the Airplay icon will appear in compatible apps. By tapping the icon, you can select the receiver to which you want to stream. For example, if you have both an Apple TV and a HomePod, you can choose which one to use for AirPlay mirroring. AirPlay is a great feature to add to your home theatre setup because of its simplicity.

Imagine being able to stream your favourite music or show from your Apple device to a 7.1 surround sound setup with a single click!

AirPlay Compatible Devices

The following are the devices that support streaming with AirPlay:

Apple Devices From Which You Can Stream

The devices you can AirPlay from include:

  • Mac
  • iPhone, iPad, iPod touch
  • Apple TV 4K or Apple TV HD1
  • iTunes on Mac or PC

Devices to Which You Can Stream

  • Apple TV HD, Apple TV 4K, and Apple TV (2nd or 3rd generation)
  • HomePod
  • Speakers that have “Works with Apple AirPlay” on the speaker packaging
  • Speakers connected to the Audio Out port on AirPort Express

Furthermore, AirPlay 2 allows PC users with iTunes to stream audio and video from their computers.

How To Use Apple AirPlay on Apple TV

Depending on which Apple device you’re sharing video or audio from, AirPlay on Apple TV has various features.

You can use AirPlay to stream media from your iPhone screen, iPad, or iPod touch to Apple TV; mirror your Mac, iOS, or iPadOS device’s display on an Apple TV; and play music, podcasts, and radio stations across multiple AirPlay-enabled devices in your home (such as HomePod or other speakers).

How To AirPlay from iPad, iPhone, or iPod to Apple TV

To stream from an iPad or iOS device, you can:

  • If you want to use Apple TV as a mirror for your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch running iOS or iPadOS: Swipe up from the bottom of your AirPlay device to access the Control Center, then tap the Screen Mirroring icon. Then, select your Apple TV from the list of AirPlay devices.

To end the mirroring session, make sure the Control Center is open, then tap the Screen Mirroring icon, followed by Stop Mirroring.

  • To play videos on Apple TV using an iOS or iPadOS Apple device: To play a video on Apple TV from an iOS or iPadOS device, start playing the video, tap the AirPlay icon in the video window, and then select Apple TV from the list of AirPlay devices.

If you want to pause the stream, tap the AirPlay button at the top of the screen and then select Play on your device.

You can stream videos from the Photos app in full 4K HDR resolution using an Apple TV 4K and an iPhone or iPad device that supports 4K HDR video.

How To AirPlay Audio From Your iPhone or iPad Screen to Your Apple TV

If you’d like to listen to music on your Apple TV, follow these instructions:

  • From the device’s Control Center: Tap the Audio Controls button, choose Apple TV from the list of devices, and finally, play/pause the audio (if it isn’t already playing) by touching the Play/Pause button.
  • From the Music app on iOS or iPadOS: If the music isn’t already playing, tap the Audio Controls button, then select Apple TV from the list of devices, tap outside of the list, and finally tap the Play/Pause button.

How To AirPlay From Mac to Apple TV

Either of the following actions on the Mac will allow you to mirror your screen onto Apple TV:

  • For computers running macOS Big Sur and later: Select the Apple TV you wish to use by clicking the Control Center icon in the top menu bar, then clicking the Screen Mirroring icon.

Click the Control Center Control Center icon in the menu bar, then click the Screen Mirroring icon, and finally click the name of the Apple TV to turn off screen mirroring.

  • Macs running versions of Catalina macOS and prior: Select the Apple TV you wish to use by clicking the AirPlay icon in the top menu bar.

To stop screen mirroring, go to the menu where you should see the AirPlay icon and select Turn AirPlay Off.

  • To stream audio from a Mac to an Apple TV: Select the Sound menu item and then choose Apple TV from the drop-down menu.

How To Use AirPlay on Mac

If your Mac supports AirPlay, follow these steps to get started:

How To AirPlay From iPad, iPhone, or iPod Touch to Mac

To use an Apple device with an Apple TV, AirPlay 2-compatible smart TV, or Mac, you must be on the same Wi-Fi network. Once you open the Control Center:

  • iOS 11 or earlier or iPhone 8 or earlier: Slide your finger up from the screen’s bottom.
  • iPhone X or later, or an iPad running iPadOS 13 or later: Swipe down from the screen’s upper-right corner.

Select your Apple TV, smart TV that supports AirPlay 2, or Mac from the list, and tap Screen Mirroring. If your TV or Mac prompts you to enter an AirPlay passcode, you can do so on your iOS or iPadOS device.

To end screen mirroring, open Control Center on your iOS or iPadOS device, tap Screen Mirroring and then tap Stop Mirroring. You can also use the Apple TV remote’s Menu button.

How To AirPlay From Mac to Roku TV

Let’s look at how to mirror your entire screen to your Roku from your Mac’s menu bar if you want to use AirPlay from Mac to TV.

  • If you want to use AirPlay on your Mac but can’t find the AirPlay icon in the menu bar, go to System Preferences, then Displays and turn on AirPlay there.
  • Make sure the box next to Show Mirroring Options in the menu bar is checked on the Displays page once available.
  • Select Roku from the list of available devices and launch content directly from your computer by clicking the AirPlay button in the menu bar at the top of your screen.
  • Roku will probably prompt you to enter a passcode on your Mac.
  • Your Roku device will now start playing from a Mac screen.

How To AirPlay Video From a Windows Computer?

It’s true that you can use AirPlay on your Windows PC, but only to stream iTunes music and videos. This can be accomplished by doing the following:

  • Launch a video in iTunes.
  • To activate AirPlay, select it from the menu in the screen’s lower left corner after you click the button.
  • Pick out the screen you’d like to watch on.
  • A code may be requested of you. If so, type the code displayed on the TV into the box that pops up on your computer.
  • Select My Computer from the AirPlay menu to turn AirPlay off.

Bottom Line

AirPlay is a great way to share content, but it’s also important to know the potential security implications. When using AirPlay on a MacBook or other iOS device, they are connected over the same network. As such, any information sent over AirPlay – including audio and video streams – is potentially accessible to anyone on the same Wi-Fi network.

As a result, it’s essential to only use AirPlay when connected to a secure network. Also, disable AirPlay when not in use to prevent unauthorized access.


Why is my AirPlay not working?

Check that your iOS device and your AirPlay-enabled device are close to each other and connected to the same network; otherwise, AirPlay will not function. Next, ensure that AirPlay is turned on on both your iOS device and your AirPlay-enabled device. If the problem persists, try restarting both your iOS device and your AirPlay-enabled device.

Is AirPlay the same as screen mirroring?

AirPlay and screen mirroring are two different things. AirPlay is a way to wirelessly stream audio or video content from your iOS device to another AirPlay-enabled device. Screen mirroring is a way to wirelessly share your iOS device’s screen with another display.

How do I use Apple AirPlay?

If you’re just learning how to use AirPlay, it’s relatively simple. Connecting your Apple device to the same network as your Apple TV, AirPlay-compatible smart TV, or Mac allows you to mirror the display of your iOS device to the TV or computer. After that, open the Control Center and tap the Screen Mirroring button to get started.

What devices can use AirPlay?

Every iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad that can update to iOS 11.4 or later supports AirPlay. Any Mac running High Sierra, HomePod, and any Apple TV (4th generation or later) can act as a receiver.

Milica Milenkovic
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