Screen mirroring and screen casting have become the most common features when it comes to viewing content from a smartphone or laptop to a bigger screen like TVs. That being said, both the technologies are designed to achieve a common goal of projecting content from a smaller screen to a bigger screen wirelessly, but with a different approach.
Simply put, both the technologies work in different ways and also have different usages. To make things simpler for you, we will explain to you the difference between the two and when to use them. Additionally, we will also talk about common issues and their fixes.
Screen mirroring
What is screen mirroring
Screen mirroring, as the name implies, mirrors your phone’s or laptop’s display on a TV. What that means is what you see on one screen, it appears exactly on the other screen. For instance, if you have navigated to the Settings on your laptop, the mirrored screen will show the same thing.
When is it useful
The first and most important benefit of screen mirroring is that it does not require users to connect both the devices (the primary and secondary screens) on the same Wi-Fi network. Basically, it does not require Wi-Fi connectivity at all as the system creates its own wireless peer-to-peer connection kind of like a Wi-Fi Hotspot.
So, this makes it useful in case you don’t have Wi-Fi around you, but still want to view content on a bigger display.
What do you need to use screen mirroring
Screen mirroring is a feature that requires compatible and supported devices. So, you need to make sure that both your TV and the primary devices (smartphone, tablet or computer) support screen mirroring.
Most modern PCs, laptops, tablets and TVs come with a built-in screen mirroring feature. However, not all TVs support screen mirroring. In case your TV does not support screen mirroring technology, then there are third-party dongles available in the market.
Common problems with screen mirroring?
Screen mirroring isn’t that complicated. Once you are sure that the devices are compatible. All you need to do is scan, select and mirror. But, there are times that things don’t work properly, so here are some common problems that you may face while screen mirroring.
Wireless display not showing up on smartphones or laptop
In this case, make sure that screen mirroring features like Miracast, etc is turned on on both primary and secondary devices. Also, if you are using third-party dongles, make sure that are properly connected to the TV and turned on.
Screen mirroring is laggy and slow
Screen mirroring can be a little delayed and laggy as it is being cast by the smartphone. It also depends upon the capabilities of your wireless adapter of the primary device.
I can’t use my laptop or smartphone while screen mirroring
As mentioned, screen mirroring mirrors the primary display. So, both the displays will show the same content. That means you can’t use your phone or laptop for anything else. And, this is where the Screen casting comes in.
Screen casting
What is screen casting?
Screen casting is also about projecting the content from a smaller screen to a bigger display, except, it does not mirror things like screen mirroring. This means, if you cast something on another screen, the content will only be visible to the TV. That also means, your primary device is free for other stuff.
For instance, if you’ve cast a show from Amazon Prime, then the TV will show you the show and your phone or laptop is still available for other stuff.
When it is valid
Screen casting requires compatible hardware (Chromecast support) along with Wi-Fi connectivity. This method comes in handy when you are trying to watch a TV series while working or doing something else on your primary device. This is also good for casting games from your laptop or phone to a TV.
How to use screen casting?
Using smartphones (Android/iOS): To cast something from your phone to TV, you’ll need a compatible app that supports screen casting. For instance, the entire suite of Google apps that includes, YouTube, Photos, etc support screen casting. Similarly, online streaming apps like Netflix, Prime, Apple TV+, Spotify, etc support screen casting. In fact, the Google Chrome app also has the option to cast a tab directly on the TV.
All you need to do is look for the Cast button on the app and choose your TV from the list.
Using Windows devices: Windows, by default support, screen mirroring. However, you can use Google Chrome and Microsoft Edge web browsers to cast a tab. This can be a website or Netflix tab or Google Meet call or anything else. Here are the steps you need to follow:

  • First, make sure to connect both laptop and TV with the same Wi-Fi network
  • Now, open a new tab and navigate to something that you want to cast on your TV
  • Now, tap on three dots and choose the Cast option
    • Microsoft Edge: Tap three dots → More tools → Cast Media to Device
    • Google Chrome: Tap three dots → Cast
  • Select your TV from the popup screen to cast the content.

Common problems with screen casting
The device not showing up
Make sure both the devices are connected to the same Wi-Fi network. Also, ensure that they support Chromecast or other casting technologies
Stuttering or poor quality
Check if both the devices are not more than 15 feet away from each other. Also, check your network speed once.


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