The beauty of smartphones is that aside from using them as a means of contacting others, there are many fabulous features that can be used for a range of purposes. We have banking apps, diet apps, there is even an app to remind you of important dates in your relationship to make you a better boyfriend or girlfriend.
One thing that is really handy when it comes to using your smartphone is that it can basically be used as a TV, especially as the screens continue to become larger as new handsets are developed. The major channels in the UK have apps that you can download to use their ‘catch up’ services, such as BBC iPlayer and 4oD.
While being able to watch your favourite shows or films on your handset is absolutely perfect for when you are travelling, there are actually options that will allow you to stream these to a HDTV, allowing you to basically watch what is on your phone through your television set.
Chromecast is Google’s streaming dongle which was released last year and unlike Apple TV, it is not tied to any other iOS products.
It is very simple to set up and just needs putting into the USB port in the back of your TV.
Once this has been done, there is a free app which must be downloaded through which you are able to connect the Chromecast dongle to your smartphone. Following this, it’s just a case of streaming the specific app you want to use through your phone. For example, if you have a Netflix account on your smartphone, open it up and pick which film or show you want to watch, then tap on the Chromecast symbol and once it beings to stream through your TV, simply exit Netflix and you can continue to use your phone as usual. You can even make calls while Chromecast continues to play.
However, it is good to keep in mind that Chromecast doesn’t support all apps, so if you are hoping to use a specific app, it’s best to check that it will actually run with it.
Most smartphones are readily available to use with a HDMI cable, meaning that so long as you purchase a cable, you can directly hook the device to your TV. Literally all you need to do is plug both ends of the cable into the handset and the TV.
Once you have connected, the TV will basically show what you can see on your smartphone and from this you can surf the internet, show friends photos and videos, as well as watch any of the TV apps you have downloaded on it.
If you have a Digital Living Network Alliance (DNLA) certified phone, such as an LG handset, you can connect to a DNLA supported TV set through your home’s WiFi service.
However, both devices must be connected to the same internet router to be able to work.
Miracast works in a similar way to DNLA, but it expands further to allow you to stream to other Miracast devices, not just a TV.
Again, this works over a WiFi network and just needs a simple setup to then be allowed to begin the streaming.
There are clearly many ways in which your smartphone can be used to catch up on your favourite shows and it is just a case of knowing which form of technology will work best for you to do so.