Connect iPhone to TV: AirPlay beats the HDMI adapter

There are many good reasons to want to connect your iPhone to TV devices: Streaming movies from the iPhone to the TV, surfing on the big screen, showing photos or videos on the TV display in the big group.

If you now want to connect the iPhone to the TV, you probably intuitively think of some (ideally white) adapter that extends the Lightning (iPhone 5) or 30-pin dock connector (up to iPhone 4S) with preferably an HDMI interface. And yes, these HDMI adapters are available, directly from Apple itself, namely here:

iPhone HDMI Adapter - Please don't buy it right away!
Such an HDMI adapter for the iPhone seems practical: All content of the iPhone (few third-party apps excluded) can be sent to the TV in best HD quality. But now comes the catch: Such adapters cost - depending on the connection - Apple typical 40€ (iPhone 4) or 50€ (iPhone 5).

If you add the HDMI cable that is also required, about 10 Euros, then you end up with a total of up to 60 Euros for a wired adapter to connect your iPhone to a TV. And lo and behold: You're moving into price categories that are no longer far from an Apple TV (99 euros, eBay partner link). Apple TV? Never heard of it? Then please read on!

Apple TV - The alternative to connect iPhone to TV
what-can-apple-tv-test-hands-onApple TV is - in short - a palm-sized, black box, which is connected via HDMI to any TV and connected to a W-LAN network. Via this box, you can either rent movies and series directly from the iTunes Store and start various applications (Youtube, Watchever, Fotostream), or - and this is much more interesting - extend the screen of your iPhone to the TV. Either 1:1 or only for selected content.

This applies, for example, to the playback of movies, photos and videos, and also to various apps. With an Apple TV, for example, you can...

As you can see, an Apple TV can do pretty much everything a wired HDMI (Apple calls it Digital AV) adapter can do. And a bit more. Without cables. And partly without an iPhone. All in all, you get a handful more features for a handful more money.

Video: iPhone & Apple TV in action
Apple TV - Are there also disadvantages?
Please don't misunderstand - Apple TV isn't the eierlegende Wollmilchsau. The shortcomings include the following points:

HDMI adapter iPhone 5 incl. HDMI cable) vs. 99 Euro (Apple TV , eBay partner link) - You have to weigh this up if you want to connect your iPhone to a TV.

In our opinion, buying a cable adapter is not worth it. OK - the quality is outstanding and stable thanks to the cable connection. But who wants to run to the TV every time he wants to pause the movie or switch the photo, where the iPhone hangs on the 2m HDMI cable?

Admittedly, Apple TV costs more to buy. But Apple TV also offers more comfort. And once you've mirrored your iPhone display from the sofa to the TV without having to touch a single cable or adapter, you won't want to miss this convenience.

Whether this convenience is worth the extra 40 Euros is ultimately up to the user.

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