Wrapping up my week of product sneak peeks today with the Microsoft Wireless Display Adapter, WDA for short in this story, on the agenda.
This Miracast based device will work with any Miracast compatible Windows 8.1 device including all of Surface devices except for the original Surface RT.
When you connect your device to the WDA it opens up a world of streaming through your connected device or just another work space for reading email, browsing the web or presenting a PowerPoint briefing to a room full of people.
It arrives in a box that looks a lot like Microsoft Surface accessories and the complete package contains only two pieces – the adapter itself with a connected USB power cord and an HDMI extension cable. I guess technically it contains three pieces if you count the cap over the HDMI connector on the WDA.
Key features highlighted by Microsoft include:
- See it all on your big screen: Stream movies, watch videos, view photos or display a presentation on a big screen — all wirelessly.
- Easily connect: Just plug the USB and HDMI from the Wireless Display Adapter into your HDTV or monitor, select Wireless Display Adapter from the menu connect, then mirror or extend your screen and enjoy.
- Modernize your meetings: Project your ideas and collaborate in real time by plugging the Microsoft Wireless Display Adapter into a conference room projector or monitor. If you have a stylus for your computer, you can even use ink in PowerPoint to emphasize a point and make that big screen your collective workspace.
- Miracast technology: The Wireless Display Adapter uses Miracast technology, so you’re not limited to certain apps or content streaming; you can display everything from your device on an HDTV, monitor or projector.
Connecting the WDA just takes plugging one end into the HDMI port on your monitor, TV or projector and the other end into a powered USB hub or adapter. The included HDMI extension cable is 7 inches long and it can be used between the adapter and the HDMI port.
Once the adapter is plugged in it will power up and you will see the following image on your screen.
So now that you know the adapter is powered up and ready it is time to set up your device to access the device.
I did this on my Surface 2 and here are the steps:
Open the Charms Bar and select Devices.
Now select Project on the next fly out.
Select the display adapter itself if listed or select to add a wireless display.
The next screen you will see a pop up dialog with the WDA.
Next select that adapter.
You will now see this connecting dialog as the connection is made between the Surface and the WDA.
Once that connection is established you will see a progress bar as the final steps of connecting and installing the adapter happen on your Surface.
Finally you will see the WDA listed as a projector.
By default your Surface is mirrored on the monitor, TV or projector which the adapter is plugged in on.
You can go into Display Properties and select to use the monitor connected by the adapter as an extension of your desktop or leave it mirrored. You can also open the Charms Bar, select Devices and change how your device uses the WDA as well.
The documentations states that the connection works up to 20 feet away with the Surface 2 but I experienced a lot of lag that far away. It worked much better well inside of that range.
By the way, I also successfully mirrored by Nokia Lumia 1520 to my 25 inch HD monitor using the WDA.
The Microsoft Wireless Display Adapter will be available in the U.S. and Canada starting on 31 October 2014 and will retail for $59.95 at http://www.microsoftstore.com, Best Buy and Microsoft Stores.