Point, shoot, play: how to get your phone photos onto your TV
The days of gathering the family together and cranking up the slide-show and projector may be behind us, but the 21st century equivalent is here. The O2 Gurus show you how to get your phone photos and videos up on the big screen - so grab some snacks and get ready to show off your holiday snaps in excruciating detail.
There are loads of different ways to get your photos and videos up on the big screen, here are some of the easiest:
iPhone + Apple TV
The quickest and easiest way to get anything from your iPhone or iPad on to your TV is using Apple TV. This allows you to send photos and videos to your TV over your existing Wi-Fi network (Apple calls this system AirPlay). Simply connect your iPhone and your Apple TV to the same Wi-Fi network, open your gallery and tap AirPlay – and you're off!
If you don't have an Apple TV, check out some alternative options below.
Using your Smart TV
If you've upgraded your TV in the last year or so, the chances are it's a smart TV with access to the internet. The good news is that this will make it really easy to play your photos and videos on the big screen as long as your TV and phone are on the same Wi-Fi network. The TV itself may already come with an app to let you do this so have a scout around the interface.
If there isn't already an app on your Smart TV, try Twonky Beam – which is a stupid name for a really great service. Just download the free app on your phone or tablet and follow the simple set-up instructions. If your TV is on the same Wi-Fi network as your phone, it should find it automatically and give you a simple option to show your photos and videos on the television. Once you're up and running, any video you come across on the internet will have a little 'Beam' button that will let you send it to your TV.
Another option is to invest in a Chromecast; this handy USB-sized gizmo costs around £30 and lets you send films, music and videos to your TV from a phone or tablet. You can either mirror what's on the screen of your phone or tablet on the TV, or use a dedicated Chromecast app like Photo + Video Cast, Dayframe or PhotoCast for Chromecast to show photos off on the TV. The good news is that although Chromecast is a Google-made bit of tech, it works with iOS phones and tablets as well as Android ones. For an alternative to the Chromecast, check out the Roku streaming stick which offers similar functionality.
A good old-fashioned wire
There are a lot of great things about wirelessly streaming stuff from your phone to a TV, but if you're determined to get through the holiday slide-show without any Wi-Fi hiccups or service issues, a good old-fashioned cable might be your best bet. You'll need an HDMI converter; these will vary depending on your phone or tablet. Apple makes its own digital AV adapter, while most high-end Android phones will now work with an MHL to HDMI cable.
If you're not sure about any techy terms, check out our jargon buster