AirPlay: What it offers and alternatives to it

AirPlay is a transmission standard that was developed by Apple to send music, videos or other content to an AppleTV or airplay-enabled device. You can use it to send your music from your iPhone or iPod to an amplifier capable of airplay, or you can play your films on the iPhone and watch them on the HD television if it is connected to an Apple TV.

Airplay mirroring - perfect for games or presentations

airplay logoThe Airplay Mirroring feature is particularly exciting for people who like to play on their iPhone or iPad and want to watch the game on their HD TV. But also for business presentations you can comfortably play your keynote on the iPhone and throw the picture on the wall in front of hundreds of people via a projector with Apple TV. Everything that the screen on the iPhone, iPad, iPod, Mac or MacBook shows can also be sent to an Airplay device and thus presented in a really large format.

Airplay speakers or Sonos system?

Audio devices that use active speakers or amplifiers that support airplay are particularly popular. This means that you can easily play your music from any iOS system that is integrated in the WLAN in the room you are in.

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Another proprietary approach is the Sonos system, which spans its own network between the Sonos loudspeakers and only requires a connection to WLAN with one loudspeaker. I will present the advantages and disadvantages of Sonos and Airplay in a separate article.

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  1. martino says:

    Hello everybody ?
    I'm relatively new to the iMac world and bought a used iMac to connect to my AppleTV. Unfortunately it doesn't work.
    Up until now I have always streamed from my iPhone or iPad directly to the AppleTV, and now I would like to bring the picture from the iMac to the television.

    This is the equipment:
    Device: iMac (27 inch, late 2009)
    OS: macOS Sierra is 10.12.3 (16D32)
    Processor: 3,06 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo
    Memory: 16 GB 1067 MHz DDR3
    Graphics card: ATI Radeon HD 4670 256 MB

    Any advice from you guys?

    PS: I can stream to the TV via iTunes, but I would also like to be able to watch other content such as browsers, tables, etc. on the TV, as I am used to from the iPhone.

    • sir appleot says:

      Hello Martino! That's fine. You can select your Apple TV via "System Settings" -> "Monitor" and then at the bottom in the "Airplay Monitor" selection field.

      • Martino says:

        Hello sir, unfortunately I don't have this function.
        Only a box "Show sync options when available in the menu bar". If I tick the box there, I can see that I move some symbols (e.g. WLAN, bluetooth, Dropbox) briefly in the upper right corner and then click them back on again jump to their old position. The free space created for a second is not filled during this time.
        otherwise I can only set "Standard resolution for monitor" and / or "Scaled" on this tab.
        There is also another tab "Colors"

        The whole time the AppelTV is always on.
        At the beginning and also now at the end I try to stream AirPlay again with my iPhone6. Works without problems.

        I really do not know how to continue.

        Oh yes, even if I doubt that it is because it works with the iPhone or iPadmini without any problems, I would still like to mention. - My AppleTV is 3rd generation.

        • sir appleot says:

          Hello Martino! Yes, that box on the menu bar would do the job too. In my case, I also faded in and when I click on it, "Airplay on:" appears and "Apple TV4" below. Until recently I also had the ATV 3. It worked out the same way. The only thing I can think of: If you are on a different WLAN with the Mac, it won't find the Apple TV. But I guess that's not the case with you ... since iTunes Airplay works. I'm a little at a loss what it could be. :(

          • Martino says:

            Hello Sir,
            Thank you for your feedback.
            The same WiFi is actually connected because as you say yourself, the stream works via iTunes. There's a separate button for it in iTunes.

            Maybe someone else has an idea or experience with such a problem ??? - would be grateful for any contribution.

            VG, Martino

  2. Martino says:

    Hi all,
    I once contacted Apple Support with my problem and found out that this function is only possible with a Mac in mid-2011 or later.
    I have received this article "Using AirPlay to play videos from a Mac on an HD television (requirements for using AirPlay)" ( )

    If anyone of you has an idea how to do it differently (additional device or similar), I would be really very grateful. Since the streaming function was one of the main reasons I bought a Mac after all (and unfortunately it's not enough for a newer one), it is very important to me to be able to use this function. And for me, it's mostly about streaming the entire screen, not just YouTube video or iTunes content, because that works.

    Thank you and greetings.

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