Laptops might not be the ideal devices to enjoy movies and stream online content as they have smaller screens. While it is not possible to increase your laptop’s screen size, you can connect it to your TV and watch content on a bigger screen.
In this article, we are only going to focus on Android TVs and how you can connect your laptop to them.
With the emergence of smart technologies, there are different methods you can use to connect your laptop to your Android. Not every method will be suitable for you.
Depending on the available ports in your TV and connectivity features, you can choose a convenient method.
Below are the different options to set up a connection between your laptop and Android TV.
There are two ways to connect a laptop and an Android TV together, and the wired solutions are the best options since you will find a range of compatible cables in the market that can correctly plug into both these devices.
The HDMI port is the most widely used port in Laptops and the Micro HDMI, Thunderbolt, and Mini DisplayPort are the less commonly found port types in laptops. You will find suitable cables for each of these port types.
1. Using a VGA Cable
Most Android TVs lack a VGA port. Instead, they come with HDMI ports. HDMI comes with a single cable and supports high resolution. Besides, you need an additional cable for audio when you use VGA cables.
But, if your TV has a VGA port, and for some reason, you do not want to use the HDMI port, then you can use a VGA cable to connect your Android TV and laptop.
Below are the step-by-step instructions to set up a connection between your laptop and Android TV.
- Plug one end of the VGA cable into your TV’s VGA port and the other end into your laptop port.
- Similarly, plug both ends of a 3.5mm audio cable into your TV and laptop ports.
- Now, turn on both devices.
- Choose the respective input channel on your TV. It will either be RGB or PC.
Once you do this, the connection will be established automatically. But, if it does not, then you have to visit the System option under the Settings menu. Then, choose the TV option in the Display column.
Here, you also have the option to adjust the resolution according to your TV’s resolution.
2. Full-Sized HDMI
The easiest as well as the simplest way to connect your Android television with your Laptop is with the help of an HDMI. HDMI cables usually come at a very low rate, so you do not have to worry about high expenses.
You can use HDMI cables to stream popular shows in high resolution. Most of the Laptops have an HDMI port and so do Android televisions. Just follow the steps that are provided below to use this way:
- Link your Laptop to your Android/ Smart television with the help of an HDMI cable.
- Turn on the Laptop and also Android TV.
- Use the Remote of your Android TV to choose the right “HDMI input”.
If you follow these methods, then the connection between Laptop and your Smart/ Android TV will be automatically established.
But, if for some reason, the steps are not working, then go to “Settings”> “System”> “Display” and check if the “TV” option has been selected. The resolution of your Laptop can be adjusted to match up to your Smart TV’s resolution.
3. Mini-HDMI or Micro-HDMI
A normal full-sized HDMI cable can always be connected to most Laptops. But some brands that manufacture Laptops do not support the full-sized HDMI port. They either use the Micro HDMI or the Mini HDMI.
In such a case, buying a full-sized HDMI cable for such laptops will be a waste of money. Always check the specifications of the HDMI port of your laptop. If your Laptop has a micro or mini HDMI port, then buy the suitable cable and follow the steps listed below:
- Take the micro/ mini HDMI cable and use it to connect your Android TV with your Laptop.
- Switch on the Laptop as well as the Smart TV.
- Choose the “HDMI input” that is correct with the help of the TV remote
4. Thunderbolt, DisplayPort, or Mini DisplayPort
These are different types of ports that are found in many laptops. Thunderbolt is the most commonly found in Laptops.
You can also use a single cable to connect the Laptop with your Smart Television if your Laptop has a DisplayPort. But the audio devices will have to be manually switched so that you will be able to play audio through your Android/ Smart TV.
If you purchase the correct cable, you can also connect a Laptop that has a Mini DisplayPort with your LED smart TV.
If your laptop has a DisplayPort, then you will have to purchase an adapter that will have an HDMI connection on one end and the other end- a “DisplayPort” connection. The method of connecting is the same as the method used for HDMI cables.
5. USB-C port
Some laptops usually have a USB-C type of port. In such a scenario, if you wish to connect your Laptop and your Smart TV/ Android TV, then you will have to check if the TV also has a USB-C port.
And if your TV does have a USB-C type of port, then just go to the store or go online and buy a USB-C cable and proceed to choose the right input on your Android TV.
But, all USB-C types of ports are not able to transmit a video signal and that is why you should always check this factor before you spend your money in buying a USB-C cable.
The next best option is to purchase a “USB-C to HDMI adapter”. Now, get the USB-C cable and plug it inside the Laptop, and put the HDMI cable inside the port of your TV.
Connect the laptop and your Android TV together using the “USB-C to HDMI adapter”. In your TV, select the right HDMI input. The step-by-step process is:
- Connect your Smart TV/ Android TV with the help of a USB-C cable or you can use a “USB-C to HDMI adapter” if your TV does not have a USB-C port.
- Switch on the Laptop and turn on the Android TV/ Smart television.
- On the TV, choose the right input with the help of the TV remote depending on the type of cable that you have used.
The wireless options of connecting a laptop with a Smart TV or an Android TV is a more recent phenomenon. Wireless connectivity is the most hassle-free and easy to understand.
In this section of the guide, we will explain the step-by-step procedure of how you can connect your Windows laptop to your Smart TV as well as how you can connect your MacBook with your Android TV.
1. Using Wi-Fi Direct
With the help of Wi-Fi Direct (WPA Key), you can connect your laptop to your Android TV effortlessly. You can also transfer content using this method.
The specific method to establish this connection differs from one TV to another. You have to navigate and choose the appropriate settings depending on the Android TV brand and model.
We have listed step by step instructions for connecting your laptop to a Sony Android TV using Wi-Fi Direct (WPA Key),
- Visit the Applications menu on your Sony TV and activate the Wi-Fi Direct
- Now, go to the Control Panel on your laptop.
- Click on Connect to a network from the Network and Internet.
- Select the SSID (Service Set Identifier) that is shown on your TV screen.
- To check the SSID and WPA key information, visit Other Methods from the Manual section on your TV.
- Now, click Connect on your laptop.
- Type the WPA key displayed on TV to Security Key Window and select Ok. Please remember it is case-sensitive. So, type it exactly.
Besides this, you can also connect your laptop and Android TV using WPS PBC if your laptop supports WPS.
2. If you have an Apple computer
This is for those users who have a Macbook and are wondering how they will connect it with their Smart TV. If you have a Smart TV that is Macbook compatible, then you can simply connect your Macbook with your Smart TV through “AirPlay”.
Smart TVs that are enabled with AirPlay- 2 or Apple TV are the devices, which are compatible with this option. You can mirror the display of your Laptop or stream videos with the help of AirPlay. Here is how you can do it:
- Check if your Laptop, as well as your Smart TV (AirPlay- 2 enabled) or Apple TV, are all connected to the common Wi-Fi network.
- Open the video-streaming website or app from your Laptop.
- Choose the “Screen Monitoring” icon from the “Video Playback Controls”.
- Now select your Smart TV (enabled with AirPlay- 2) or Apple TV and your video will start playing on the big screen.
If you wish to end the process, then you will have to tap on the “Screen Monitoring” icon in the Controls for Video Playback and then select “Turn Off AirPlay”.
3. If you have a Windows computer
Various brands manufacture Windows laptops. This indicates that Windows users are much more in number than Macbook users.
The steps mentioned below will help all the Windows users to seamlessly connect their Laptop with their Android TV:
- On the right lower corner of your laptop screen, there will be a message icon. Tap on it.
- Choose “Connect” from the options that are displayed.
- Choose “Projecting to the PC” from the bottom Right of your Laptop screen.
- On the “Settings”, select “Available everywhere” or “Available everywhere on secure networks”.
- Under the option “Ask to project this PC”, select “Every Time” or “First Time Only” based on what you would prefer. You will also have the option to decide whether you wish to set a PIN.
- Your computer will then notify you that your TV needs to connect. Select “Yes”.
- After it gets connected, your laptop will open the “Windows Connected App” and now you can start playing videos on your big TV screen.
Screen Mirroring and Screen Extending
When you mirror two devices, both the devices will display the same content. This is the easiest and simplest way to connect two smart devices.
In this, you cast the screen of your laptop on your Android TV. So, whatever you do and see on your laptop, you can see the same thing on the Android TV.
Screen extending, on the other hand, will allow you to watch different content on two different devices.
In this, the Android TV is an extension of your laptop. You can control and navigate the Android TV using your laptop. For instance, you can watch a video on your TV. Simultaneously, you can also work on an office presentation on your laptop.
Finding Miracast Support on your Windows Laptop
Miracast is an in-built feature in the latest smart devices that allows you to connect two devices together. If you are not sure if your Windows laptop has Miracast support or not, you can verify it using the following steps,
- Open the Run window by pressing the Windows key and R.
- In the Run window, type dxdiag and click ok.
- After this, click on Save all information. Now, save the file on the desktop.
- Open the saved file and search Miracast.
If it shows ‘Available’, then it means your Windows laptop supports the Miracast feature. If it shows ‘Not supported by Graphics driver’, then continue the steps listed below,
- Download and install Intel Driver Assistant and update the drivers.
- Then, visit the Microsoft store and update the Microsoft Wireless Display Adapter.
- Now, repeat the same steps to check if it shows ‘Available’ when searching for Miracast.
Even after doing all this, if it does not show as ‘Available’, then your Windows laptop does not support Miracast.
So, with the help of these methods, you can simply play entertainment shows right from your Laptop on your Smart TV or Android TV. You will also save the costs on a DTH connection or a cable connection.
You can watch your favourite shows on Netflix on your big TV screen with your family as well as friends.
All you would need is a proper cable if you have a Smart TV that does not have a wireless connection and if your TV supports wireless connection, then you do not have to worry at all.