How To Utilise Apple TV and Airplay on Your MacBook


Apple launched its streaming service, called Apple TV+in 2019 and as time passes more and more Apple users are beginning to get interested in it. It was initially only allowed for mobile streaming but also eventually transitioned to Macs, but since it is still relatively new and unfamiliar, many users are still in the dark on how to effectively utilise it. As such, we decided to put together a small handy guide to help users get better familiar with it.

Once you have purchased the device, you can now download the Apple TV app. If you have already upgraded your OS to Catalina or Big Sur, then the app should already be available for you and you can find it already waiting on your dock. From this app, you will now be able to easily; subscribe to channels, like HBO, Showtime, etc; check out some of Apple’s original shows, watch content from local cable TV providers, even purchase or rent movies. The next thing you need to do is connect your Mac to the Apple TV device.

To accomplish this, you need to connect the device to your television using an HDMI cable or usb 3.0 hub with long cable. After this, using Airplay you can now connect your MacBook to the Apple TV device and start streaming all your favorite movies and series. It’s that simple!

Something that most users may forget is that Apple TV is a streaming device that can be used to connect from an iPhone, iPad, or Mac to stream content to your TV. So, for those looking to purchase the Apple TV device, you can easily get it from the online Apple store or any physical retail store. It is also available from other retailers like Best Buy and Walmart. As of now, the device comes with a storage size of 32GB and is priced at $180, with the 64GB version is set at $200.

The Airplay feature is conveniently located at the top of your MacBook’s screen in your topmost menu bar. However, if it’s unavailable, then you will have to then activate it. This can be done by simply heading to “System Preferences” > “Display” > “Show mirroring options”. You should now be able to access the Airplay feature and from that point, you can select it and then input the AirPlay passcode that pops up on the TV screen onto your Mac. Moreover, if you enjoy audio streaming, Airplay is also useful as you can simply head over to the music app and stream the content by selecting the Airplay icon, which is usually set right next to the volume slider.

If you didn’t know what Airplay is, it is the latest functionality that now comes pre-installed in all Apple devices and it is what allows your device to wirelessly communicate with Apple TV. It essentially helps you either stream the content or simply use the screen mirroring feature to stream the content straight from your device’s screen to a TV. Additionally, a common misconception is that AirPlay is like Bluetooth, but that is not true. This is because while Bluetooth compresses the audio stream transmission, AirPlay keeps the file’s original picture quality. Moreover, Bluetooth’s range is limited to about 30 meters, whilst AirPlay can extend as wide as your WiFi network can reach. Also, Bluetooth is limited to one device at a time whilst AirPlay can handle multiple devices concurrently. In short, it is designed to simplify your streaming, gaming or music experience.

In some cases, if you try to use Airplay and it refuses to work then it is important that you remember to check whether both devices are connected to the same WiFi network as Airplay can’t function if they are connected to separate networks. If they are connected to the same WiFi network and the Airplay still isn’t working, then go to “System Preferences” > “Security & Privacy”. From there, you can try switching off your Mac’s firewall, this should help fix the problem you may be having. However, another simpler solution would be rebooting your Mac and your WiFi router in an attempt to reset everything.


In summary, this article should give you all the information you need to get your Apple TV streaming up and running in no time. However, it is extremely important to also remember that Apple TV is a 4K resolution device which means it needs a 4K television to properly display your content in high definition. Additionally, you must remember that it also requires an HDMI cable for connecting the TV to the Apple streaming device. In this respect, we recommend utilizing a 10ft usb c cable, which is ideal, if you require some distance when connecting to your TV.