How to Connect an iPad to a Projector

Use your iPad as a projector for presentations and movies

A data scientist uses an iPad with a projector

Monty Rakusen / Getty Images


Connect your iPad to a projector to show slides, share videos, and mirror the screen. A projected screen makes it easier for others to see without crowding around your device or passing it from person to person. In most cases, you can also connect an iPad to a television or computer monitor.

Here's how to connect an iPad to a projector with wires, and wirelessly with an Apple TV. With a wired connection, what you see on the iPad appears on the screen. With a wireless AirPlay connection, you can mirror the screen or share content from any app that supports it.

Instructions in this article apply to iPads with iOS 12 or later.

How to Connect an iPad to a Projector With a Cable

The projector, TV, or monitor must allow input from either an HDMI or VGA connection. Because the iPad has a Lightning port, use an adapter to plug into the iPad and either an HDMI or VGA cable that connects to the display device.

How to connect an iPad to a projector

In most cases, use the HDMI connection. HDMI transmits video and audio through a single cable. If you’re a frequent presenter, you may encounter older systems that only allow a VGA connection, so you may want to carry both kinds of adapters and cables.

To connect an iPad to a projector, TV, or monitor:

  1. Use the correct adapter. On an iPad Pro released in late 2018 or later with a standard USB-C port, use either a USB-C to HDMI adapter or a USB-C to VGA adapter depending on the display device. These are the same connectors that connect a macOS laptop with a USB-C connection to a projector. You can use the same USB-C adapter with Mac and iPad.

    On an iPad with a Lightning cable connector, use a Lightning to HDMI adapter or a Lightning to VGA adapter.

  2. Get the correct cable. In most cases, use the HDMI or VGA cable that came with the projector, TV, or monitor. If you don't have an HDMI or VGA cable, purchase a Belkin HDMI cable from the Apple store or buy an HDMI or VGA cable from a third-party vendor, such as Monoprice.

  3. Connect the devices. Plug the adapter into the iPad, plug the cable (HDMI or VGA) into the other end of the adapter, then plug the cable into the projector. If the adapter includes a port for power, connect a power cable. Some systems and setups only work with a power source.

  4. Power on the devices. Turn on the projector and the iPad. The projector or display detects the connected iPad and automatically shows the screen.

  5. Change the settings. If the screen doesn’t appear after the projector has been on for a minute or two, you may need to change a setting on the projector, TV, or monitor. Look for buttons or menu items that control the source.

How to Share Your iPad Display Wirelessly

You can also connect an iPad to a projector wirelessly. You'll need a projector with an HDMI connection, an Apple TV, and an HDMI cable. Also, the Apple TV and iPad must be connected to the same Wi-Fi network.

You can mirror an iPad in portrait and landscape orientations.

  1. Connect the Apple TV to the projector. Use an HDMI cable to connect the Apple TV to the projector. The projector is the display instead of the TV. Turn on the projector and make sure the Apple TV is powered on and working.

  2. On the iPad Home screen, go to the upper-right corner and swipe down to access the Control Center.

    Screenshot of iPad control center, with Screen Mirroring option visible
  3. Tap Screen Mirroring.

    Connect iPad to projector
  4. Tap the name of the Apple TV.

    Connect iPad to projector
  5. To stop sharing the iPad display with the Apple TV, go to the Control Center, tap the name of the Apple TV, then tap Stop Mirroring.

    Stop Mirroring command on an iPad
  6. The Apple TV screen will return, and you can disconnect the iPad.

How to Use AirPlay from an App

Many apps can display a photo, video, or file via AirPlay from within the app. Use AirPlay when you want to share content without revealing everything on the iPad screen.

Not all apps support AirPlay. Check for compatibility before following these steps.

  1. Open an app that supports AirPlay, for example, YouTube.

  2. Find the video you want to share, then tap the AirPlay icon.

    The AirPlay icon on iPhone.
     Star Wars/YouTube
  3. Tap AirPlay & Bluetooth devices.

    AirPlay and Bluetooth Devices on iPhone
     Star Wars/YouTube
  4. Tap the name of the Apple TV to connect to it.

    Available devices for AirPlay on iPhone
  5. To stop sharing, tap the AirPlay icon, then tap the name of the device to switch back from the Apple TV.