How-To: Stream Video From iOS to Mac Using AirPlay

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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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