Yes, but you’re going to need additional equipment. Fortunately, it’s very straightforward to set up Zoom on your Smart TV. If you’ve used Zoom on a computer, you can use it on a TV!
Hi, I’m Aaron. I love working with technology and turned my passion for it into a career. I want to share that passion with all of you. Like many of you, Zoom and other telecommunications platforms became my lifeline to friends, family, and work during the COVID pandemic.
Let’s walk through some of the options you have to use Zoom on a Smart TV (and not-so-smart TVs).
Table of Contents
- Zoom on a TV is great because of the extra screen space and the (likely) more relaxed environment.
- Some Smart TVs support the Zoom app, but there’s no single list. You’ll need to plug in a compatible camera to get it working.
- You can Cast Zoom to a supporting Smart TV with your iPhone or Android phone, but…
- It’s probably better to use a computer plugged into the TV.
Why Use Zoom on a TV?
Three words: screen real estate. If you’ve never done it, I suggest you try it. Especially if you have a larger panel 4K TV. You can actually see people on screen and it feels much more interactive.
Also, think about where you typically use your TV: in front of a couch or other more relaxed environment. Depending on your work environment, that may not be appropriate. However, for some more relaxed office cultures or when talking with friends and family it can make for a much more relaxed conversation.
Do Smart TVs Even Support Zoom?
That’s unclear. As of the time of writing this article it looks like some TVs in 2021 did support the Zoom app natively, meaning you could install it on your TV, but it looks like that functionality was short-lived.
It is even rarer to find a Smart TV that sports a built-in camera. Apparently, while people are willing to invite Alexa, Siri or Google Home into their personal space, a TV with a camera is too much. That’s probably for the best given the equally questionable Smart TV track record for privacy.
So even if you could load Zoom TV natively, you’d likely need a camera.
How Do You Get Zoom on Your TV?
There are a couple different methods for getting Zoom on your Smart (or not so smart) TV. One’s a little more involved to set up than the other, but provides an overall better experience, in my opinion. I’ll start with the simpler one and move to the more complex one…
Cast to your TV
If you have a Smart TV or a Roku streaming device or other device connected to it that supports Casting, you can stream content from your iPhone or Android phone to your TV. I covered how to set that up at length here.
I, personally, don’t like this method. It uses the camera and microphone from the device you’re casting from. So if you’re casting from an iPhone, for example, you still need to hold the iPhone up in front of your face for the people with whom you’re meeting to see you.
You can still use the TV for the increased screen space, but it’ll display what’s on your phone at the resolution on your phone, in the orientation of your phone. So it’s likely that any benefits will be undone by virtue of the setup.
You also need to mute your TV if you use this method. If you use your smartphone or tablet, the microphone is only designed to cancel out sound from its speakers, not external speakers. So if you decide to use your TV’s speakers, you’ll get bad feedback.
There is a better way with a more complicated setup…
Connect a Computer to Your TV
You can connect a desktop, laptop, or mini PC to your TV. Typically you’ll need four things to make this work:
- The computer
- An HDMI cable – you’ll want to make sure one end of the HDMI cable fits your TV and the other end fits your computer. If your computer only provides display-out via USB-C or DisplayPort, that’s going to be important for finding the right cable
- A keyboard and mouse – I prefer wireless for this and there are numerous options that combine a keyboard with a trackpad
- A webcam
Once you’ve collected your assorted components, you’ll want to plug the computer into one of the TV’s HDMI ports, attach the keyboard and mouse to the computer and attach the webcam to the computer. You should be able to mount the webcam above the monitor.
You’ll then use your TV’s remote control to select the input corresponding to your computer. Turn the computer on, log in, install Zoom and you should be good to go!
Because there are hundreds of combinations of TV and computer, I would recommend that you consult both the manual for your TV and computer if you have specific questions. The process I described, however, should be the same for all modern TV and computer combinations.
Can I do the Same with Teams?
Yes! So long as you can load the telecommunications service on your computer or Casting device, you can do the same thing with Teams, Bluejeans, Google Meet, FaceTime and other services.
There are a few options for you to get Zoom on your TV, smart or otherwise. Built-in TV support for Zoom is rare and finding a TV with a webcam is even rarer. You can work around this, however, by attaching a computer to your TV. That has the added benefit of turning it into a large computer monitor–so anything you can do on a computer you could do on your TV.
Have you used a TV as a computer monitor or Zoom device? Let me know in the comments!