How to Screen Mirror on Roku

By Jim Kimble / Updated November 18, 2023

Screen mirroring on Roku devices and Roku TVs is a popular feature that has been around for years. 

But much has changed with how you can enable screen mirroring with your iPhone, Windows PC or Android smartphone. I don’t share the consensus with how to effectively cast images, videos or apps to a Roku after testing out various methods that have worked in the past.

Key takeaways

  • You no longer have to dig through the “Settings” tab on your Roku to start mirroring to your TV.
  • Roku also supports limited casting capabilities for Netflix and YouTube. 

Here is everything you need to know about screen mirroring to your TV with Roku.

What is screen mirroring on Roku?

Screen mirroring allows TV viewers to essentially duplicate or “mirror” video and images on a smartphone, tablet or PC to a Roku streaming device or Roku TV. 

Roku devices and Roku TVs let you watch live TV, on-demand streaming services and even local channels

But you may have photos or videos on your iPhone or Android smartphone that you want to see on your TV. Likewise, you may want to use the Netflix or HBO Max app on your phone or tablet instead of Roku. 

The screen mirror mode is often confused with “casting”, which is a feature made famous by Chromecast devices. 

On October 2, 2014, Roku introduced screen mirroring in beta on a limited number of Android and Windows devices. At the time, Roku OS version 6.0 operated most devices. (Roku OS 7.7 or higher is now required for screen mirroring.)

The latest Roku OS is 12.5 as of November 2023. As new updates rolled out to the Roku OS, the ways you can share, and screen mirror to a TV has changed. Some instructions on the web are still very dated, which prompted me to write this guide.

How to screen mirror on Roku or Roku TV

Most new Roku streaming devices support the screen mirror feature, but you should always update your software before trying it out.

Roku TVs made by Hisense, TCL, Sanyo, Sharp and others also support screen mirroring. These instructions apply to Roku and all Roku TV models.

How to screen mirror to Roku from an Android device

These steps will work for any Android smartphone, including Samsung Galaxy models, and Google Pixel phones.

To quickly start the screen mirroring process, go to the “Settings” tab on your Android phone.

  1. Make sure that your Roku is connected to the same WiFi network as your Android smartphone. 
  2. Under the Android smartphone settings, navigate to and select the “Smart View” icon. 
  3. elect the Roku you want to connect to and the “Start Now” tab on your phone, if prompted. 
  4. On your TV screen, Roku will ask to “Always Allow”, “Allow”, “Block” or “Always Block” the Android phone.
  5. Choose “Allow” or “Always Allow” to mirror the smartphone on Roku or Roku TV.

Once you see your smartphone screen on TV, you are free to navigate to any app. 

Roku has simplified the screen mirroring process compared to years past. You no longer have to navigate through the Roku’s settings tab to start mirroring a smartphone or tablet.

If you are using screen mirroring to watch a video on YouTube or a streaming service, your smartphone may ask if you want to “change aspect ratio”. 

In other words, the smartphone wants to know if you want a horizontal screen like you would have on a TV. To stop mirroring, just tap the “Smart View” icon again on your Android smartphone. 

If your Android smartphone doesn’t have a “Smart View” icon, you may have similar mirroring features such as “display mirroring”, AllShare Cast, Quick Connect or SmartShare.

How to screen mirror to Roku from an iPhone

iPhone and iPad users can use Apple AirPlay and HomeKit support instead of using the screen mirroring option on Roku. 

The AirPlay icon can be found in the upper right hand corner of your iPhone or iPad screen. With some apps, you may not see the AirPlay icon right away. 

Use the AirPlay tab on an iPad or iPhone to screen mirror on Roku. (photo credit: Jim Kimble / The Cord Cutting Report)

When I opened the Discovery+ app on my iPad, there was no AirPlay tab to be found. After I selected a program to watch, the AirPlay tab became available in the upper right hand corner of the iPad screen. 

After you enable AirPlay by tapping the icon, an AirPlay Passcode will appear on the TV screen. Enter the four-digit code onto your iPad or iPhone screen, if prompted.

To disconnect from Airplay, you can press the home button of the Roku remote control. 

How to screen mirror to Roku from a Windows 10 or Windows 11 PC

Screen mirroring your Windows 10 or Windows 11 PC to a Roku starts on your PC or laptop. Make sure your Windows PC and Roku are connected to the same Wi-Fi network.

  1. Click on the Start icon tab at the bottom of the screen of your Windows PC or laptop, and click on the Settings icon. 
  2. Under the Settings Menu, choose the “System” tab, then “Display” tab. 
  3. On Windows 11, select the “Display” or “Multiple Displays” menu to find the “Connect to a wireless display” option, and click on the “Connect button”. 
  4. On Windows 10, scroll to the bottom of the “Display” screen and select the “Connect to a wireless display” option.
  5. On your PC, select the Roku device you want to connect to that appears on your list of available devices. On the Roku or Roku TV screen, select “Allow” or “Always Allow” if prompted. 

The Windows PC will now be wirelessly connected to your Roku device for screen mirroring. To disconnect the two devices, look for the “Disconnect” button on your PC display. Older Windows PCs that have Miracast support screen mirroring as well.

Casting Netflix and YouTube apps to Roku

Casting Netflix or YouTube from a smartphone to a Roku or Roku TV is supported. Based on my testing of a dozen apps, casting support appears to be very limited. 

You may have an app on your phone that supports casting, but it may not be supported by Roku. 

So for example, the mobile apps for Paramount Plus and Showtime both support casting to a TV. But Roku will not come up as a choice when you press the casting icon.

Casting Netflix essentially launches the Netflix app already on your Roku. Netflix may not launch directly to the show or movie you chose on your phone right away. But the program will eventually appear. 

Even after you disconnect your phone from casting, you still might be in the Netflix app on Roku. Simply grab your Roku remote control and hit the home button to get back to Roku’s main menu. 

Roku screen mirroring FAQ

The difference between screen mirroring on Roku and casting apps can be confusing for some TV viewers. Here are some frequently asked questions from Roku owners about using the screen mirror function. 

How do I turn on screen mirroring on my Roku?

The quickest way to turn on screen mirroring with a Roku or Roku TV is with your mobile device or tablet. For Android phones, press the “Smart View” icon under settings. iPhones and iPads can launch an app on their iOS device and use AirPlay to mirror the screen. 

Can you screen mirror on a TCL Roku TV?

Yes. On an Android smartphone, you can hit the “Smart View” tab under settings, and select your Roku TV on the phone’s screen. On the TV screen, use your Roku remote control to click on the “Allow” or “Always Allow” to begin mirroring your device.

With an iPhone, it’s basically the same process except you use the Apple AirPlay button on your iOS device. In both cases, your devices and Roku need to be connected to the same Wi-Fi network. 

How do you add screen mirroring on the iPhone to Roku?

Roku now allows iPhones and iPads to use Apple Airplay and HomeKit as an alternative to screen mirroring. 

Launch the iPhone or iPad app you want to use, and press the AirPlay icon at the top of your screen. Accept your Roku device or Roku TV when prompted on your iPhone or iPad to begin mirroring to your TV. 

How to screen mirror HBO Max on Roku

You can use the “Smart View” tab on Android devices, and Apple AirPlay with iPhones and iPads to screen mirror HBO Max to a Roku or Roku TV. 

How to screen mirror Disney Plus on Roku

To screen mirror Disney Plus to Roku, use the “Smart View” tab on Android devices. iPhones and iPads can use AirPlay to screen mirror Disney Plus to a Roku or Roku TV. 

Can I screen mirror photos, music, and videos on Roku?

You don’t have to use screen mirror mode to share photos, music or video from your smartphone or tablet. 

The Roku app for mobile has a “Play on Roku” option. It is essentially a screen cast option that can tap into your phone’s entire photo or video collection in a few clicks. 

  1. Open the Roku app on your mobile device or tablet. 
  2. Tap on the “Devices” icon in the right bottom of the screen.
  3. Tap the “Media” tab and select from “Music”, “Photos”, “Video” and “Screensaver” folders.

You should make sure that your Roku is designated as “Connected” under the Device tab. Once connected, you can swiped through your photo folders and pick what photo you want to share on your Roku home screen.

Why is my Roku not screen mirroring?

Not every Roku or Roku TV support screen mirror, but most do. 

If you have having trouble using screen mirroring mode on Roku, go to Settings, select System and Software update. Select the “Check Now tab, and try screen mirror again after your Roku or Roku TV updates its software. 

Make sure your internet connection is working if you have trouble updating your software. 

Which Roku devices support screen mirroring?

Most Roku TVs and Roku devices, including Roku Ultra, Roku Streaming Sticks and Roku Premiere support screen mirroring. Generally speaking, you want Roku OS 7.7 or higher to use screen mirror. 

Here is a list of model numbers that support and do not support screen mirror mode.

Roku Express+ (model 3910): Screen mirroring is only supported on the HDMI output. It is not supported on the composite, or A/V output.

Roku Express: Screen mirroring is not supported on model 3700. Screen mirroring is supported on models 3960, 3930, and 3900.

Roku Express+: Screen mirroring is supported on models 3931 and 3910, but not on model 3710.

You can use the Roku device comparison chart to determine the current products that support screen mirroring for Android and Windows devices.

To find the model number of your Roku device, go to Settings > System > About.

For more news on streaming, how-to guides and reviews, head over to the main page of The Cord Cutting Report or follow the CCR on Google News.

Jim Kimble is a seasoned industry expert with over two decades of journalism experience. He has been at the forefront of the cord-cutting movement since 2016, testing and writing about TV-related products and services. He founded The Cord Cutting Report in 2016, and serves as the editor.

Major publications, including MarketWatch, Forbes, and South Florida Sun Sentinel, have interviewed Kimble for his years of expertise. He gives advice on the complexities consumers are navigating with streaming options, and over-the-air TV. Kimble has been a staff writer or correspondent for several award-winning, daily newspapers, including The Boston Globe.