Did you know that you can wirelessly mirror the screen of an iPad or iPhone via an Apple TV? Did you know that soon you’ll be able to do the same with your Mac?
Well now you do!
iPads, iPhones and (soon) Macs are all able to wirelessly mirror their displays via an Apple TV and present their displays on any screen, monitor or projector attached to that Apple TV, all you need is a wireless network to connect to and you’re off. It is so easy and so cheap (only $100 for the Apple TV + an HDMI cable) to implement with so many advantages, that any church would be crazy not to connect an Apple TV to a projector or TV.
Read on to find out what you can do with an Apple TV connected to a projector.
What you can do with an Apple TV
As I said, either an iPhone (specifically iPhone 4S), iPad (iPad 2 or new iPad) or Mac (running Mountain Lion) can mirror the display (and audio) via an Apple TV. And by doing so, there are a number of tasks that can be accomplished, and I’ve come up with at least 4 things you could do with an Apple TV.
All of which can be done wirelessly!
1. Wirelessly give a presentation
This is very easy to do. With any presentation software on a Mac (PowerPoint, Keynote), a presentation can be given in Full HD by mirroring the display onto the projector screen. Even better, install Apple’s Keynote on an iPad or iPhone and walk around, device in hand, giving the presentation. Great for preachers who like to be in control of their presentation while walking around the stage.
2. Show video content
As I stated earlier, not only does the Apple TV mirror the display, it also mirrors the audio. So you can easily present any video content from an Apple device on a projector screen. The only consideration to make is that the audio comes out via HDMI with the video, so you would have to make sure that you have an adaptor. Below are two images showing an iPad mirroring its display to an Apple TV, then playing a video. Note how the video takes up the full width of the TV.
3. Demonstrate websites
If your Church has a website that they want to show off, then that is easy to do by mirroring the display onto the screen. You can walk around, wirelessly connected to the Apple TV and use an iPad to show off the website. You can zoom, and scroll around with ease. Almost too much ease.
4. Use any App!
Any App that you have on an iPad, iPhone or Mac can be seen via an Apple TV. This opens an amazing world of possibilities when showing presentation. Imagine using the new Flyover feature in iOS 6 to view the location of your church’s missionary partners. A whole new world of connection! Below is a Bible App being mirrored wirelessly via an Apple TV.
Using an Apple TV connected to a projector is not all rosy however. There are some drawbacks, and below are 4 that I could think of.
1. Must be connected to a wireless network
Connecting an Apple Device to an Apple TV can only be done over wifi. And if you don’t have a wireless network then it just won’t work. Also, if you do have a wireless network but it’s not very reliable, then you won’t be able to be certain of a good, consistent connection.
2. Can only mirror display
Unlike a wired connection, you cannot display your presentation on the Apple TV, and presenter notes on your computer at the same time. You can only mirror your display. This means that what you see on your computer, your audience sees on the screen.
3. May need special adaptor for audio
As I stated earlier, the Apple TV outputs audio and video via HDMI, so if you’re video source is not your audio source then you will need an adaptor. But if you are using a large widescreen TV as your display, then you’ll be able to get both audio and video through the one cable.
4. Can only connect to one Apple TV at a time
If your church has multiple displays or projectors, then you’ll need to connect an Apple TV to a central hub, and send the signal out from there. This is because each Apple device can only connect to one Apple TV at a time.
You now may be wondering how to connect an Apple device to an Apple TV. It’s easy to mirror the display of an iPad or iPhone. Simply double tap the home button, swipe to the right and tap on the button that looks like a triangle poking a rectangle (Airplay), then tap on the Apple TV you want to connect to, and tap airplay. That’s all you need to do assuming that the devices are on the same wireless network.
Watch the video below starting at 4:10 to see how easy it will be to do on a Mac when Mountain Lion is released in July.
If your church has a number of people who use Apple devices to present with, then connecting an Apple TV to a projector or HDTV is a no-brainer. It is so easy to do and so cheap with so many benefits. Imagine being able to walk around the stage while presenting with iPad in hand. It allows for such freedom and control. And with updates constantly coming to these devices, it can only get better.
[Image via nakagawa]