Pair your laptop with YouTube

UPDATE – Chrome has been updated to screen-cast without having to follow these steps below. Also, you may find that your settings don’t look like the settings below. Such is life with continuously updating software (it’s a GOOD thing).

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If you have a smart TV hooked up to the internet, chances are there’s a YouTube app installed. It’s cool until you have to enter a keyword search or do any kind of browsing that is awkward and error-prone on a TV remote. The YouTube app on my Samsung TV addresses this problem beautifully by providing a screen that allows you to “Pair” your TV with a “Mobile Device” (See How-To video). I have an iPhone, and this worked OK, but more often than not I’ll be sitting on the couch with my laptop on my knee (you thought I was gonna say “lap” didn’t you), wishing it was ‘pair-able’ with my TV’s YouTube somehow. Problem is, if you try to go to youtube.com/pair on your laptop, they simply don’t allow you to pair up with your TV. Rats.

(Side note… ultimately, what I REALLY want is wireless screen sharing with my TV, or a seamless solution that makes my computer treat my smart TV like a second monitor, but so far, there does not appear to be such a thing without investing in additional hardware or using a direct HDMI cable connection. Side-side note: it’s fairly easy to share media files with your smart TV wirelessly by running a DLNA Media Server on your computer).

So back to pairing a laptop with YouTube on TV…

Open Chrome on your computer, then open the Developer tool bar.

chromeDevMenu

When the Developer tools pane shows up, click on the little gear in the lower right hand corner:

chromeDevSettingsGear

The Settings pane will pop up, and you can click “Overrides” and check “User Agent”, setting the User Agent menu to something like “Android … Galaxy…” or some mobile device.

overrideUserAgent

Now when you navigate your browser to YouTube.com/Pair, they will allow you to enter the code to pair your ‘device’ to your TV.

Once the laptop and TV are paired, click the TV icon (located in the upper right corner of the YouTube page in your laptop’s browser) to indicate that you want video to now play on the TV:

YouTubePlayOnTVIcon

28 Comments

  1. This is a great solution … I do not understand why google does not add this feature. Also, do not even understand why someone has not created an extension for Google Chrome … That would be a great idea :) I’ll think about it.

    • Sorry for the late reply. So far, I haven’t found a software-only solution. But Chromecast is cheap and I like it a lot. It still doesn’t allow general screen share, but it lets me show my browser, which is fairly useful. Hope that helps.

  2. I have tried this… but when I pair using URL : youtube.com/pair on laptop, it doesn’t ask me for the code and show some info page. I think google has changed it and its available only for phone or tablet.. sign.. :(

  3. Seems youtube saw the stupidity of not allowing pc’s to pair so they fixed it. I just browsed to Youtube.com/pair with my laptop, entered the code and was ready to go. Thanks anyway for your article ;-)

  4. First time share was simple, but must I re-enter a code each and every time I try to pair up? My laptop shows my TV as an active pair at youtube.com/share, but I can’t figure out how to pair w.o./re-entering. Thanks.

    • Same here, just got new smart TV entered the code at youtube.com/pair on my laptop,everything was working fine,but when came back next day to watch another video the TV icon in youtube wasn’t there, so do we need enter the code each time?!?

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