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Stream Music, Photos, and Video with AirPlay on Your iPhone

AirPlay is a wicked cool bit of technology baked into every copy of iOS (version 4.2 or higher). It allows you to wirelessly stream music, photos, and video to AirPlay-enabled devices such as Apple’s AirPort Express Wi-Fi base station and second-generation Apple TVs, plus certain third-party devices that have AirPlay technology, including (but not limited to) speakers and receivers.

The AirPlay Selector icon is quite shy. You’ll see it only if your iPhone detects an AirPlay-enabled device on the same Wi-Fi network. For example, if you have a second-generation Apple TV in your den and an AirPort Express Wi-Fi base station on your back deck, you will see the options in the figure when you tap the AirPlay selector icon.

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Tapping Apple TV sends whatever is playing on the Music app to the Apple TV in the den. The Apple TV, in turn, is connected to a home theater audio system and HDTV via HDMI (an optical audio cable would suffice if you want to stream only audio, not video).

But wait — there’s more! If you use an Apple TV as your AirPlay-enabled device, in addition to streaming music, video, or photos from your iPhone to your HDTV, you can also stream from your Mac, PC, iPad, or iPod touch.

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