How to Mirror an iPhone to a PC or Laptop
Screen mirroring and screencasting were introduced years ago, and they are still very relevant today. These display methods have replaced projectors in boardrooms and classes. People also use these for personal purposes, of course. Want to watch online clips with your friends? Searching for them and playing them is much simpler when you have a phone at the palm of your hand than using a smart TV remote.
An iPhone/iPad screen can be mirrored to macOS devices, Chromebooks, Windows 10 PCs and laptops, and most Smart TVs. But the setup process is rarely identical.
A Quick Note
There is one thing to take note of here. Mirroring your iOS screen onto another device is not as straightforward as you might think. This is mainly because iOS devices do not come with a dedicated screen mirroring app. That is okay, Android devices do not come with one either.
So, you are either going to have to use a cable or a third-party app.
How to Mirror an iPhone to a Mac
As you are probably aware, Apple takes pride in its ecosystem. There are a ton of compatibility and ease-of-access benefits if you use Apple products across the board.
The Screen Mirroring option on your iOS device is a great example. If you are using an iOS device or an iPod touch, you can mirror the screen to an Apple TV. If not, you can do the same on AirPlay 2-compatible smart TVs.
However, this feature will not help you mirror your phone screen onto a Mac, at least not on its own. More specifically, there are two ways to mirror the screen from your iOS device to a Mac.
If you are familiar with Macs and MacBooks, you know that QuickTime Player is much more than a media player. Apple’s proprietary app is loaded with other features specific to Mac users and subscribers.
Yes, QuickTime can help you mirror an iOS screen onto a Mac device. There is one downside, though – this method requires a wired connection. So, if you don’t mind, this is the best way to mirror your iOS screen on a Mac computer.
With a Lightning-to-USB cable, connect your iOS device to your Mac computer. Close any other apps that use communication between the iOS device and the Mac computer.
- Open QuickTime.
- Go to File, and select New Movie Recording.
- By default, you will note that the iSight camera is selected. Click the arrow pointing downward and select the connected iOS device from the list.
- Yep, that is it – your iOS screen should immediately appear on your Mac’s display.
The Reflector app takes care of the one downside of the QuickTime method – the obligatory wired connection. With Reflector, you can mirror your iOS screen onto your Mac computer wirelessly over Wi-Fi.
- Navigate to the app’s page and select Try Reflector.
- Now, click Download Reflector.
- Once the .dmg file is downloaded, open it. Drag the Reflector entry to Applications.
- Launch the app. Select Try Reflector.
- Open your Control Center by swiping from the bottom of the screen. Tap Screen Mirroring.
- Select your Mac device from the list.
Note that Reflector does not have an interface or anything. It essentially lives inside your device’s AirPlay feature.
How to Mirror an iPhone to a Chromebook
Considering QuickTime Player is mostly for Macs, you won’t be able to run it on your Chromebook. It is available on Windows, but there is no QuickTime app for Chromebooks – remember, these are designed for browsing.
Still, your Chromebook likely has a larger screen than your iOS device, and you may just want to mirror that small screen on something bigger. Well, you will be happy to hear that this is entirely possible.
There are many apps that can help you mirror your iOS screen, but Reflector probably is the most natural. It is just like using Screen Mirroring on your Mac device.
- Download the Reflector installer. Launch it and install the app.
- Follow the same steps as indicated for Mac devices.
How to Mirror an iPhone to a Windows 10 PC or Laptop
As mentioned, there is a QuickTime for Windows. However, QuickTime 7 for Windows is not supported by Apple anymore, so the method might not work. Unless you already own the QuickTime app on your PC, we do not recommend going with this method.
Using the Reflector app is definitely most recommended. The app works like a charm on Windows 10 desktop and laptop computers.
Just follow the instructions listed above, and you will be able to connect your iOS device to that PC or laptop at any time.
Bear in mind, though, that this connection is made via Wi-Fi. Your desktop PC will have to have a wireless adapter, or the Reflector method won’t work.
How to Mirror an iPhone to a Smart TV
As mentioned earlier, Apple TVs and Smart TVs with AirPlay 2 capabilities can easily mirror your iOS content. It is as simple as using the Screen Mirroring feature in the iOS Control Center.
But what about those smart TVs that are not AirPlay-compatible? Can you mirror your iOS screen on those devices? For the majority of them, yes.
Unfortunately, the oft-mentioned Reflector is not available on a smart TV.
The most straightforward and stable way to mirror the iPhone or iPad screen on your Smart TV is to use an HDMI cable. For this, you are going to need Apple’s Lightning Digital AV adapter, which essentially allows you to plug in an HDMI cable into it. The adapter itself plugs into your iOS device. The other end of the HDMI cable goes into the HDMI port on the TV, so you are looking for an HDMI male connector on both ends. Make sure that the cable is long enough.
Alternatively, you could use a lightning-to-HDMI cable that the manufacturer certified to work with the iPhone and iPad.
Once everything is connected, set the TV to the correct HDMI input (where the HDMI cable is plugged into), and the mirroring should commence immediately.
If you want wireless mirroring for non-AirPlay TVs, there is not a quick solution. You will have to look up your TV’s model and see if there is an app that can help you mirror the iOS screen. For instance, AirBeamTV allows you to Screen Mirror both macOS and iOS devices across a number of smart TV manufacturers. Still, it is not a universal solution.
1. How do I connect my iPhone to the Windows laptop?
If you’ve found an ideal method that allows you to mirror your iOS screen to your Windows PC’s screen using the wired method mentioned above, you’re all set. Although Apple is notorious for its proprietary ports, connectors, and cables, all standard Lightning cables have a USB connector on the other end. Yep, it’s as easy as that – just plug that iOS device into your Windows desktop or laptop.
2. How do I connect my iPhone to Windows 10 via Bluetooth?
Maybe you’ve found a perfect Bluetooth method for screen mirroring. In that case, you might want to know how to pair your iOS device and your Windows 10 computer with Bluetooth. This is done via the Personal Hotspot option on your iPhone. Turn on the Bluetooth feature from the Settings menu and select Personal Hotspot. Then, flip the switch next to Allow Others to Join.
This will create a Bluetooth connection between your iOS device and your Windows 10 PC.
3. Can you AirDrop from an iPhone to a PC?
The AirDrop feature is great for transferring files between Apple devices. It’s quick, seamless, and effortless. However, Windows and Android devices simply don’t support AirDrop – at least not yet. So, no, you can’t AirDrop from an iOS device to a Windows PC or a Chromebook, for example.
4. How to Screencast YouTube?
If you want to simply play videos from your phone or tablet and have them appear on your TV, things couldn’t be simpler. The iOS YouTube app features a square icon with a Wi-Fi-like symbol in it. Tap this and use one of the connection options. Don’t worry, you don’t need AirPlay-capability to do it.
Although it is not entirely straightforward and simple, it is possible to mirror iOS devices to near anything: desktop or laptop PCs, Smart TVs with or without AirPlay 2 capabilities. Follow the instructions above carefully, and you will have your iOS screen mirrored on your desired device in no time.
Have you managed to successfully mirror the screen of your iPhone or iPad to a larger screen? Which method did you use or prefer? Do you have a better alternative for any of the abovementioned devices? Feel free to leave a comment and join in on the discussion below.