How to Connect an iPad to HDTV

Updated February 21, 2017

Use the Apple digital AV connector with the iPad 2 for full playback support. This wired connection mirrors your screen in any app located on the second-generation iPad. If you have a first-generation iPad, some apps may not work with this adaptor. For wireless playback, the Apple TV hardware can turn your HDTV into a receiver for specific apps on either generation of iPad, but support is entirely app-dependent. This means that if you want to play more than iTunes movies, music or podcasts or stream from your Netflix app, the digital AV adaptor is your best bet.

Turn on your iPad and HDTV.

Plug the Apple digital AV adaptor into the docking port on the iPad. The other end of the adaptor offers two ports: an HDMI jack and a connector for your iPad charging cable.

Plug an HDMI cable into the appropriate port on the adaptor, and plug the other end into your HDTV.

Adjust your TV's input settings to HDMI input, if necessary. On the iPad 2, your screen automatically mirrors on the TV. For first-generation iPads, launch the app you want to play on the TV. If it supports HDMI output, the app will appear on your TV screen.

Plug the Apple component AV cable into the docking port on your iPad.

Plug the audio and video out plugs on the adaptor into the corresponding jacks on your HDTV.

Plug a USB cable into the component adaptor's USB jack, and plug the other end into your iPad's wall charger if you want to keep the iPad powered while sharing with your HDTV.

Turn on your TV and set it to the appropriate input for the audio/video jacks. This may be labelled as "DVD/VCR," "Component" or some other input on your TV.

Launch the app with the item you want to show on the TV and begin playing the audio or video. If the app supports component cable connections, it will appear on your TV screen.


Consult your HDTV's user manual if you do not know how to set the TV for HDMI input, as this varies from model to model. As Apple continues to release software updates, more options may become available for connecting both generations of iPads to HDTVs.

Things You'll Need

  • Apple digital AV adaptor
  • HDMI cable
  • Apple component AV cable (original iPad)
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About the Author

Anne Hirsh has been writing and editing for over 10 years. She has hands-on experience in cooking, visual arts and theater as well as writing experience covering wellness and animal-related topics. She also has extensive research experience in marketing, small business, Web development and SEO. Hirsh has a bachelor's degree in technical theater and English and post-baccalaureate training in writing and computer software.