How To Cast To Roku From Android, PC and Mac.
By default, the Netflix and YouTube apps support the open DIAL (discovery and launch) protocol, which means you can stream any Netflix and YouTube videos from your phone to your Roku-connected TV. To do this, simply launch the YouTube or Netflix app on your smartphone and press the broadcast button. It should automatically detect Roku on the same network and start streaming that video. Very simple. This also works if you want to stream YouTube from your computer to Roku.
Unfortunately, you cannot use the DIAL protocol on anything other than YouTube and Netflix. So, if you want to stream videos to Roku from other video channels, or even videos that may be in local storage; you will have to use a combination of screen mirroring and third party apps. So, today I will show you how to stream any video to Roku from Windows, Android and even Mac.
Before we start
Make sure screen mirroring is enabled (it is usually enabled by default), you can check go to Settings System Screen Mirroring on your Roku and make sure it is set to Prompt or Always. Also, it is important to work that both devices are on the same Wi-Fi network. Now with that in mind, here’s how you stream to Roku.
Read: How to Watch Netflix on TV (5 Ways)
1. Send to Roku from Windows
All Windows versions support Miracast, and we can use Roku to project Windows (8/10) screen to TV via Roku.
To mirror Windows 8 or 10 screens to Roku, connect it to the same Wi-Fi network as your Roku and click the notification button in the lower right corner of the taskbar. There you will see several options, find “Project”.
There you will see several options, find the “Project” button and select “Connect to a wireless display”.
List of available devices for projection. Select Roku and you will be prompted for Roku and also allow the device to project to TV, allow dialog on your TV using the remote.
Now, if you play any video in your browser or local storage, it should stream easily to Roku.
Send to Roku from Android
Android added Miracast support for versions 4.2 and up and eventually dropped it for its proprietary Google Cast. Luckily, you can still use the Miracast protocol to cast your phone’s screen to Roku using Miracast. The steps are pretty simple and easy to follow.
On your Android phone, go to Settings, find Screen and press once to open a new set of options, select Screen Cast.
It will show you a list of available devices on which you can display your phone screen. Select your Roku device and you’re done.
Read: 5 Ways iPhone / Android Can Cast Screen To TV Without Chromecast
However, things get complicated with the Apple ecosystem and there are several workarounds. We need to use Roku to our advantage and find ways to stream devices to Roku.
Send to Roku from Mac
The Mac has never adopted Miracast and uses its proprietary Airplay for all wireless streaming in the ecosystem. However, this does not mean that we cannot use it with Roku. Roku cast is a Chrome extension that works well on Mac and lets you cast your entire Mac desktop to Roku wirelessly. Let’s see how it works.
Install Rokucast on your Roku by clicking on this link (CL9D5D). This will give you a warning that you can ignore. After that, go to the Roku settings page and update it. You should now see Rokucast on the Roku homepage.
Connect your computer and Roku device to the same network. While you are doing this, write down your Roku IP address, we will need it later.
Install Rokucast in Google Chrome on your Mac. It’s not available in the Chrome store, so you’ll have to download the CRX file from Github, unzip it, and drag it to the Chrome extension page, i.e. chrome: // extensions.
If not working, make sure developer mode is enabled.
Go to Mac, click the Roku cast extension icon, click the little gear icon in the bottom right corner. This will open a new window, enter the Roku IP that we noted earlier. Then click the return icon.
Then play any video in your Chrome browser (remember it must be an html5 video) and now if you click on the RokuCast extension you will see a small broadcast button next to the video file. Click on this and that’s it. The video link will be sent to Roku. You can now shut down your Mac and watch videos on Roku as it downloads videos from the internet directly like Chromecast.
The iPhone and iPad also lack the Miracast protocol and you cannot directly transfer data from the iPhone screen to the Roku. However, Roku allows you to stream content to your TV using the official app, just download it and cast your iPhone to your TV. This app is not yet available outside of the US, so this method will not work anywhere outside of the US.
Using Roku as your Chromecast
The functionality is not limited to just streaming channels, you can use Roku to connect your personal devices for streaming content. It can stream your Windows desktop (8 and up) using Native Miracast. Android also has Miracast standard built in, and you can take advantage of it and cast your mobile phone screen to your TV. These were several different methods of casting screen on Roku, and it covers most devices. Let us know in the comments which device you are using to stream to Roku.
Must Read: Chromecast vs. Firestick vs. Roku vs. AndroidTV vs. Apple TV: Which Should You Buy?