Screen mirroring is a very handy tool, especially when it comes to watching something on your TV. Whether it’s video content or even photos, screen mirroring makes it possible to view on a larger screen. Miracast is a tool that can be used for efficient screen mirroring. Here we explain what Miracast is and how it is different from Google Chromecast.
What is Miracast?
Miracast acts as a wireless HDMI connection that can mirror everything from screen to screen. Miracast is one of the Wi-Fi features present in modern devices and it is not a separate device like the Chromecast. This integrated protocol is not only a receiver, it can also work in both directions. The Wi-Fi Alliance, which is a global consortium of companies, has decided to make Miracast a standard protocol. This means that any Miracast-enabled device will be able to connect to any other nearby Miracast-enabled gadget.
How does Miracast work?
Miracast uses Wi-Fi Direct technology which is already present in Wi-Fi enabled devices. This technology allows two devices to connect wirelessly without a Wi-Fi router. This direct connection even offers faster data exchange.
Miracast is like an alternative to HDMI cables as it can mirror the screen wirelessly. If you want to show a video you are watching on your phone to other people on a smart TV, you can mirror your smartphone screen using Miracast and the video will play on your TV and phone simultaneously.
Chromecast vs. Miracast: What’s the Difference
Most offices have Windows systems and Miracast can be a better solution for the desktop environment as it can also cast a Windows screen. Microsoft included a simple guide to connecting Windows 10 devices to displays wirelessly, where users won’t need an HDMI cable or Chromecast dongle.
Since Miracast is a built-in feature, it will be available in most devices and can turn them into “receivers”. For example, users can broadcast their android smartphone to a TV or PC. Meanwhile, in the case of a Chromecast, the TV the dongle is plugged into will act as the only receiver.
More importantly, Miracast can work completely offline, which Choremacast can’t do. The closed connection created by Miracast between devices does not require an active internet connection. However, Chromecast requires an active internet connection even when you want to show photos from your hard drive or if you are mirroring your screen. With Miracast, users can play a movie that is saved on their hard drive and can project the screen to the TV to watch it on a big screen without even an active internet connection.
However, Miracast can be used as a regular Smart TV media player because the only function it can perform is screen mirroring. The mobile device becomes unusable when its display is projected onto another screen and even drains a large portion of the main device’s battery. On the other hand, Chromecast is primarily a media player which can also be used as a screen mirroring device. Chromecast will be a better option if you want to use Netflix or other apps on your phone to cast videos to your TV.
Another significant disadvantage for Miracast is that it does not work on Apple devices. Apple has decided not to use the protocol recommended by the Wi-Fi Alliance because it uses the proprietary protocol Airplay standard, which works almost the same as Miracast. Smart TV users who don’t have built-in Miracast can also buy a Miracast dongle like the Chromecast which can work offline and is comparatively cheaper.
Miracast provides a lot of convenience for people who need to present regularly. Moreover, this technology is also included on two other streaming sticks available in the market – the Roku Ultra and the Amazon fire stick.
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