How to connect your iPhone5/iPad 4/iPad mini to your TV

How to connect your iPhone5/iPad 4/iPad mini to your TV

Summary: Here are two ways to connect your iDevice to a TV. One method will cost $49, the other $99.

TOPICS: Apple, iOS, iPhone, iPad

It's a Saturday morning, which means it's a good time to answer a popular question from the Hardware 2.0 mailbox.

How do I connect my iPhone5/iPad 4/iPad mini to my TV?

I'm going to assume that since you own an iPhone/iPad/iPad mini that you have a TV that's new enough to have an HDMI port.

OK, if your TV has an HDMI port them you have two choices. One option will cost you $49, and the other will cost $99.

Let's start with the cheaper of the two options – buying Apple's Lightning digital AV adapter cable. This is simply a cable with a Lightning connection on one end, and mini HDMI on the other.

(Source: Apple)

See alsoCheap 'iPhone 5x'? Don't get your hopes up

This adapter will allow you to mirror whatever is on the screen of your iPhone 5, iPad 4, iPad mini, and fifth-generation iPod touch – including apps, websites, photos, video, slideshows, and more – on any HDMI-equipped TV or display, up to 720p HD.

The adapter will also carry audio from your iDevice to the TV.

If you want to pipe content to a display that has a VGA connector, use the Lightning to VGA adapter, which will also cost you $49.

That's the cheap option. The $99 involves buying for yourself an Apple TV set-top box and hook this up to your TV using an HDMI cable, which, oddly enough, is not included in the box.

(Source: Apple)

This will allow you to not only connect your iDevices to your TV, but also allow you to stream iTunes content, and access other services such as Netflix and YouTube.

Which should you go for?

Personally, I like the Apple TV, because it has more features than just an adapter. But the downside of this device is that it is bigger than a Lightning to digital AV adapter and is also requires a power cord. However, if you are looking for a portable solution, then maybe the adapter will suit your needs – even if it does cost an eye-watering $49!

Topics: Apple, iOS, iPhone, iPad

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  • I got the Apple TV for mirroring

    But found we actually use the box itself for a lot: Netflix, iTunes, YouTube.
  • Streaming and content mirroring are two different but similar actions.

    BTW, I use the Apple TV option myself.

    Now, content mirroring is basically "what you see on your iOS device" is "What you see enlarged on your home HDTV" set.

    Streaming content is just a bit different in action. Sometimes a website viewed on an iOS device will have an embedded video clip. Using the Apple TV option, that embedded video clip (and ONLY) that video clip will be streamed and shown on your HDTV set.

    Likewise, quite a few iOS apps support streaming just their video clips to the HDTV set.
  • Adrian didn't mention that OS X devices can use both options as well.

    If one wishes to mirror content from an OS X device, both the adapter cable and the wireless Apple TV options can be used and it will work in the same fashion that AKH described for iOS devices.

    When OS X Mavericks is released, your HDTV set (in addition to mirroring your OS X device's content) will also serve as an extended second monitor for your system.

    I would imagine that a 4K HDTV set would provide an excellent extended secondary monitor to a person's OS X Mavericks powered device - among other things. Grin.
  • You need a different cable when you want to stream iphone 5 screen to TV

    You need to use an lightining digital av adapter for iphone 5.

    Lightning Digital AV Adapter -
    Bj Pamatmat
  • Lightning Adapter is not a choice any more

    Honestly, I think that except for some special cases like travel purposes the Apple TV is the much better choice when it comes to connecting your iDevice to a TV. Given the fact that OS X Mavericks is now fully supporting Airplay you can make use of all your other devices being connected to your Apple TV as well, see comparison here:

    I can't figure out why people are still paying $49 plus $20 for an HDMI cable to connect their iPad / iPhone to a TV.... and it is so inconvenient compared to the wifi solution with Apple TV. Who want to be restricted by cables when you want to control video playback from your sofa ;-)
  • Make sure you get the correct cable

    You need the right cable for your model iPhone and TV.
  • My Cable Offers Better Options

    Sorry to say that all of the siggestions a not better if you have cable. I subscribe to DirecTV and I can get more than what Aple TV will give. Although Apple TV is a one-time cost but I can sync my iPad. iPhone, or MacBook with YouTube and the quality is superb. When a friend saw this features at my house he quickly retuned the Aple TV he bought a few days prior. Luckily he hadn't opened the box so it was easy to decide. Nothing against Aple TV but my cable has much better options.
    • In addition to the above

      The cable TV is in combination with a large screen TV set with WiFI. A perfect combination that beats Apple TV.