Android devices got one step closer to interoperable wireless display sharing as the Wi-Fi Alliance announced today the launch of the Wi-Fi Certified Miracast certification program. The first consumer products certified since testing opened to vendors include the LG Optimus G and Samsung Galaxy S III, and we expect many more to follow.
Miracast make use of a Wi-Fi Direct connection to deliver audio and video content from one device to another, without cables or a connection to an existing Wi-Fi network. Pretty much any of the current crop of Android devices could potentially see Miracast support, but they will need to receive a software update to enable it after they are certified.
“Wi-Fi users around the world want to experience multimedia on the device of their choice – no matter what brand – and Miracast is the breakthrough they have been waiting for,” said Edgar Figueroa, CEO of Wi-Fi Alliance. “We have been delighted with the level of enthusiasm and support among our member companies for this new offering.”
Industry analysts predict annual shipments of Miracast-certified devices to exceed one billion units within the next four years. The new Samsung Echo-P Series TVs are also Miracast certified, so they should work out of the box without any additional accessories.
Current HDTVs and other displays will be able to directly connect to Miracast devices with the addition of small dongle that plugs into a HDMI port. We expect most of these dongles will retail for $80-100, but prices should dip to as low as $50 once the Miracast standard gains popularity.
Google has not announced native Android support for Miracast, but I expect it will be included in the next release of Android (Key Lime Pie). Android 4.x already has support for Wi-Fi Direct, which Miracast builds on.
Check out the demo videos below to see Miracast in action.