It seems that AirPlay, Apple’s revamped AirTunes technology, has been catching on and rapidly expanding in the last few months that iOS 4.2.1 has been around. There are now many ways to stream media to and from devices, with functionality mimicking that of the Apple TV (and beyond).

With new solutions emerging on both the desktop and the iPhone, modern technology and innovative development have taken the legwork out of streaming and sharing. Here are the best ways to take advantage of this amazing technology and choose where YOU want to see your content…

1. Stream video from your iPhone to your Mac


2. Stream audio from your Mac or PC to your iPhone

My favorite method to do this has always been AirFoil. It’s available for the Mac and the PC and will stream anything that outputs sound, whether that’s a website, an application, or just system audio. There’s a free iOS app in the App Store called AirFoil Speakers, free apps by the same name for Mac and Windows desktop, and a feature-rich paid app that will stream audio from an application of your choosing to anything that can accept AirPlay streams. It comes bundled with a video player that compensates for the audio lag, which makes this solution stand out from the others. The latest version 4.0 sports a handful of awesome features including reverse connection initiation from a desktop speakers app to the serving computer, with such functionality expected to come to iOS soon.

Use this with the App Store app Reemote for Airfoil and you will get some advanced reverse connection capabilities, such as source application control and individual speaker controls.

The free way to do this is to just use iTunes, but you will be limited to your iTunes music and video libraries.

3. Stream video from your iPhone to your Mac


4. Stream video from one iOS device to another

5. Turn Your iPhone into AirPlay speakers

To do this, get on your desktop (or open up MobileTerminal on your iPhone) and SSH into your device. Then copy and paste the code below into the terminal and press enter. Once it completes, reboot your device. If you’re running a tethered jailbreak, boot tethered. Your iPhone will now appear on AirPlay speaker menus automatically. Your device screen must be on, for as soon as the device aut0-locks or sleeps the audio quality will get noticeably choppy. You should use this with the AutoLock SBSettings Toggle.


apt-get update
apt-get install wget
apt-get install unzip
cd /tmp
wget http://cl.ly/3Pu1/AirPlay.zip
unzip "AirPlay.zip"
cp "AirPlay/airtunesd" /usr/libexec
cp "AirPlay/com.apple.airtunesd.plist" /System/Library/LaunchDaemons
chmod 755 /usr/libexec/airtunesd
chmod 755 /System/Library/LaunchDaemons/com.apple.airtunesd.plist
rm -r "AirPlay.zip"
rm -r "AirPlay"

Alternatively, you can do this with an FTP/File Browser client (visually) with this tutorial. Remember, this will not work until you reboot (the respring doesn’t cut it).

Once you have this working, you can open up Apple’s official iPhone Remote app to control iTunes and select your iPhone as the AirPlay Speakers option. It will be like having your entire media collection (40,000 songs in my case) right on your iPhone!

Let us know if you try any of these.

  • Me

    And I’m still waiting for native Linux -> iPhone AirPlay streaming 🙁

  • Haha thats why its a good idea to have a chuck of both worlds, i got windows and linux running on my laptop..but still it would be cool if they just did it 😛

    • bluecrabs

      haha.. i just QC scanned your avatar..
      lmao epic.. I love you too.. (in a non-gayish way 😀 )

  • chunk*

  • If anyone does decide to do the AirPlay speakers SSH terminal install method, note that the quotation marks in the post do not copy and paste right into the terminal. You will need to either type each command manually or copy and paste into a text editor and replace them with system standard quotes, otherwise you will get errors.

  • Bert

    does anyone know how to solve problems with Airfoil Speakers cutting out after a few mins? Have installed Airfoil for Windows and am trying to stream to iTouch but the results are very inconsistent – any help appreciated.

  • Mikey

    Help please can anyone tell me why all of a sudden my iPhone 4 telling me it’s connected to a tv and i can’t watch any videos of anything without this picture of a tv on my iPhone screen and saying it’s connected to a tv i never connected to a tv before. I tried watching YouTube huluplus news ect and get audio but no video????? 

  • Really like airplay, it’s expanded even more recently.

  • I just jailbroke a Verizon iPhone 4 on 4.2.8 (with jailbreakme, the fastest and easiest jailbreak ever for the devices and firmwares it supports). I installed AirServer from the Cydia store, but that didn’t work with the new iTunes 11. iTunes kept saying “The AirPlay device ‘Ayeef Owen’ is not compatible with this version of iTunes.”

    AirFoil Speakers Touch has had it’s AirPlay functionality removed per Apple, and Airfloat has been completely removed. I couldn’t even find them in ipa format for download anywhere. So having no other options, I tried option 5 above, even though I figured it would be exactly the same thing I already installed with AirServer from Cydia.

    Using the files referred to in this article worked, but the directions given here did not. apt-get did not work for me. I used Netatalk from Cydia to have the phone show up as a shared computer in Finder on my Mac. Once visible in Finder, I copied the files to folders on the phone, then used SSH to move the files to the folders indicated in the article. I then ran the chmod command on each file, and rebooted.

    Success! iTunes 11 could not work with AirServer from Cydia, but older versions of iTunes still did. Only by copying over the daemon and plist files was I able to get it to work, and now it’s flawless!

  • Nedski EightySix

    Not sure I should mention this as Apple might try & stop it as they’ve done to all the other methods to force people to buy iTunes Match or monthly services like Spotify etc. You must be JB and install AirPlayServer, works on 7.1.1 & 7.1.2 on iPod Touch 5G, iPhone5, & iPad Air. Foresee no issues on older devices. Works great in house & all around the yard. BTW, AirPlayServer is free with no option to donate, though I would be happy to. If this is already common knowledge my apologies.