Hands On With OS X Mountain Lion AirPlay to Apple TV (Video)

One of the most exciting features in the upcoming OS X Mountain Lion upgrade is the ability to wirelessly stream your Mac’s desktop to your Apple TV.

The iPad 2 and iPhone 4S have had this feature for some time, so it is great to see AirPlay arriving on the Macbook Air and MacBook Pro. I’ve been reviewing the new Mountain Lion version of OS X for the past few days and I wanted to share my first impressions of AirPlay for Mac.

(OS X Mountain Lion Features Announced)

airplay for MacOnce OS X Mountain Lion ships this summer, I expect to see a spike in Apple TV sales as users stream Hulu and Network TV shows to their Apple TV and businesses add the ability to wirelessly use projectors.

AirPlay for Mac allows you to connect to an Apple TV, sending your current screen to an HDTV at the current resolution or matched to the Apple TV’s 720P resolution. You can see our hands on with AirPlay for Mac on OS X Mountain Lion in the video above. You get a look at webpages, videos on a webpage and full 720P HD video from Hulu Plus streamed from a MacBook Air to an Apple TV.

Airplay for Mac iTunesThe process is very easy and it works as advertised. There were occasional disconnects during my time using AirPlay for Mac, but this is a developer preview so I expect that Apple will work out these bugs by the time OS X Mountain Lion is released.It is nice to be able to stream to the Apple TV in either resolution.

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You can stream your audio along with video to the Apple TV, or if you want to just push the audio from your MacBook Air to your Apple TV and home theater system you can do that too. If you are using iTunes, there is a button in the lower right to choose your speakers with a few clicks, including using multiple AirPlay speakers.

Comments

  1. Steve says

    So I am a developer, but when i try using airplay mirroring, it says that This airplay device is not compatible with this software, and im running OSX Mountain lion 

    • Paul says

      Did you find a solution? I am getting the same: This AirPlay device is not compatible with this software. Is there a 5.1 beta for apple tv?

  2. Flunkycarter says

    i see the airplay icon and have the apple TV 2 but i can’t stream to my apple TV 2… it just doesn’t show up in the menu like it does in iTunes

  3. Robman says

    get the same thing “This airplay device is not compatible with this software” and I am  running OSX Mountain lion . Josh what are u running on your apple TV ??

  4. MrPeters says

    Did you try streaming a DVD playing on the mac? Some people do stick to DVD’s in stead of video on demand.

  5. Elisneji says

    hi this is becouse only the most recent macs can do it aparently dual core duo are not suited for this purpose.dont know why but iam gessing the final version will include only the i5 and i7 processors,pearhaps to keep it smooth.now that 5.1 is out older sistems should get at least sound just like i get with mid 2009 MBA but no video with mountain lion.i hear airparrot its quite good does the same as ML airplay.hope this helps

  6. Barefootman says

    I’ve got a late 2011 iMac and I can’t even see the airplay symbol anywhere on my Mac. Am I missing something? The computer’s on the same network at the AppleTV running 5.1b2

  7. jrt600 says

    Now my question is this: can Mountain Lion only mirror my Mac’s desktop thru the Apple TV or can it also act as an ‘extended desktop’ so that I can have a webpage up on my TV while working on a spreadsheet on my MBA’s (2012) screen? I know Intel’s Wireless Display allows you to do this, and frankly I almost bought a WiDi-capable PC because of this feature alone.

  8. Justin says

    When using the mirror option to push video to the Apple TV, does your mac continue to play the audio as well. Is it in sync?

  9. brad says

    I was wondering if you can run multiple apple tis off one mountain lion. my point would be to have the same display, say a document, appear on 3 different televisions all using an apple tv.

  10. Levi- The perfectionist says

    I am a Student Developer running Developer Preview 4, and I am thrilled with the airplay feature.

    However, I too have noticed that DVD player does not work with Airplay.
    It comes up with a grey and white grid, no video when airplay is on.

    This is disappointing. I reviewed the release notes on the developer website and did not see this listed as a known issue.

    Do you think Apple might not allow it due to copyright reasons?
    Or is this just because DVD player hasn’t yet been updated to work with airplay?
    Or am I simply doing something wrong?

    • Al says

      Oops — meant to send this as a reply, but also posted in as a seperate blog entry.

      ————————————-

      I have the released version of 10.8 and have two Apple TVs (720 and 1080) and both mirror just fine. The DVD grid looks to be intentional as I’ve gotten the video to “sneak” through dynamically for a second before the software figures it out and blocks the stream with the grid… the audio still makes it through, so if you’re okay with listening to the content your good. Just start the DVD and get past the menu option and then then turn AirPlay on.

      I sent feedback to Apple to enable DVD AirPlay hoping that will give them leverage. Recommend you do that same if this is something you want. http://www.apple.com/feedback/dvdplayer.html

  11. Al says

    I have the released version of 10.8 and have two Apple TVs (720 and 1080) and both mirror just fine. The DVD grid looks to be intentional as I’ve gotten the video to “sneak” through dynamically for a second before the software figures it out and blocks the stream with the grid… the audio still makes it through, so if you’re okay with listening to the content your good. Just start the DVD and get past the menu option and then then AirPlay on.

    I sent feedback to Apple to enable DVD AirPlay hoping that will give them leverage. Recommend you do that same if this is something you want. http://www.apple.com/feedback/dvdplayer.html

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