6 Comments

Summary:

Thanks to the excellent Erica Sadun, you can now easily set up your Mac to receive AirPlay streaming from an iOS device. Check out our simple guide to getting the new utility, called AirPlayer, up and running on your Mac.

airplayer-source

Thanks to the excellent Erica Sadun, you can now quite easily set up your Mac to receive AirPlay streaming from an iOS device. She goes into the how and why behind her utility, dubbed AirPlayer, over at TUAW, but we’ve got the quick-and-dirty on how to get it up and running right now on your favorite Apple computer.

Be warned that this software is still a very early alpha build, so things might not go exactly as planned. That’s the only caveat, though, since you won’t need a jailbroken device to do this. Legit iOS 4.2 devices should work just fine. Just follow these simple steps to get AirPlayer working on your Mac:

  1. Download AirPlayer-0.01.zip (version number will change with updates) from Erica’s website.
  2. Unzip the file, then drag AirPlayer to your Applications folder.
  3. Double-click AirPlayer to start the utility.
  4. Click the large “Start AirPlay Service” button.
  5. On your iOS device, start playing a video in the native YouTube app, or in the Videos app.
  6. Click the AirPlay icon (white rectangle with arrow, shown below) and select the receiver with your Mac’s network name.

Your video should start playing on your Mac. During testing, it worked fine for me right after installation, but later required a computer restart to work again. That’s to be expected with such an early build. Another limitation is that music and photo sharing don’t seem to work with the current build.

Though as I mentioned you don’t need to have a jailbroken device for this to work, AirPlayer used in tandem with utilities like AirVideoEnabler will let you stream much more content from many more apps than Apple currently officially allows. Whether or not your device is jailbroken, AirPlayer is a nice addition to any Mac/iOS setup, and yet another example of a user-created solution to a shortcoming Apple should have addressed to begin with.

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  1. Crashes every time on startup on my iMac. Sad. Will try on my other Macs soon, with hopefully better results. I’d love to get it to work.

  2. Malik Wahaj Ahmed Tuesday, December 14, 2010

    This is a great tutorial. Thanks for this. It is working perfectly..

  3. deltatangofoxtrot Wednesday, December 15, 2010

    Am I missing something, I don’t see any merit in doing this whatsoever. Play content from something with a comparatively small flash drive to something with a massive HDD?

    1. Sure. Say you just shot a video with your iPhone4, you can immediately watch it back on your Mac’s monitor where it’s bigger and easier for more people to see at once.

    2. Your assuming that the same media is on both devices. If it is your iPhone and my Mac then the only way to get the media on the big Mac screen is AirPlay. AirPlay is about making big screens and speakers into iOS accessories.

  4. Hamranhansenhansen Wednesday, December 15, 2010

    > a user-created solution to a shortcoming Apple should have
    > addressed to begin with.

    Apple doesn’t ship v0.01 software, they have to ship stuff that works for doctors, lawyers, artists, grandmas, etc … not just for nerds. You have to wait a little longer, but there will be a point not too long from now when AirPlay and AirPrint will be completely universal in not only all of Apple’s products but also all the 3rd party apps.

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