PadGadget’s iPad Tips: Mirroring the iPad to Apple TV

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Depending on how long you’ve had your iPad, you may or may not know some of the important, but lesser known features of your fancy devices. In order to help you get the full use of your iPad so that it isn’t being used as merely a lesser laptop, we offer tips on features that aren’t always obvious. Last week, we helped you customize your Notification Center to suit your needs.

Today, we are going to help you understand and activate AirPlay Mirroring from you iPad to Apple TV.

Some people may thing that, all they have to do to get their iPad content to show up on a TV screen is tap the Apple TV tab in the AirPlay section. Actually, there is one additional step. It is a step that will open your world to the joys of 42-inch screen gaming, slideshows, and videos.

It’s called “Mirroring” and here is how to activate it.

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First double-tap your home button to call up the multitasking bar. Swipe your finger across the multitasking bar, starting from the left side of the screen and moving toward the right. You will see some controls that look like iPod controls (forward, pause, rewind). Next to those buttons, there is an AirPlay icon (the rectangle with a triangle inside of it). Tap that.

When the AirPlay controls pop up, tap “Apple TV.” When you do, you’ll see a toggle switch that lets you turn Mirroring on or off. Turn it on.

Now, you should see your iPad’s screen on your TV. That’s it.

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Here is where the fun begins. There are a lot of apps that take advantage of AirPlay Mirroring that you probably already have on your iPad. These are apps that, when Mirroring is enabled, they turn your iPad’s screen into a controller of sorts, and show you the visual on your TV screen.

For example, in Real Racing 2, players would see a map on their iPad of the race course, while the screen showed the gameplay.

Games aren’t the only apps that take advantage of Mirroring. For example, Magic Window lets you control what appears on the screen from the app, but your TV displays the scene.

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Many apps don’t offer special screens for AirPlay Mirroring, but can be lots of fun anyway. For example, I shared Christmas with my mom this year by calling her on Facetime and using Mirroring. She did the same thing and it was like we were in the living room together while we opened presents. This made it fun for everyone in the family instead of just the person holding the device.

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Now that you know how to use AirPlay Mirroring on Apple TV, go see what apps offer special enhancements and try calling your family while watching them on your TV screen. Uncle Bill will look larger than life on your big screen TV.

About Lory: Writer of all things app related, traveler of the space-time continuum, baker of really great cookies. Follow me @appaholik