Weekend Poll: How many of you actually use MHL adapters?


The weekend is always a good time to meditate. And if you are a tech geek like us, sudden thoughts of gadgets tend to come accross. (I seriously dream about this stuff often… but I work doing this). Regardless, today’s dilemma is about MHL adapters.

Recent news that Samsung’s old MHL adapter will not work with the shiny new Samsung Galaxy S3 just hit the inter webs. Due to a different pin layout, users will have to purchase a new accessory in order to mirror their device’s media and games to a TV. It is an inconvenience for some of you, but surely, it isn’t the end of the world.

After publishing the article, I started to wonder: Just how many of our readers really use an MHL adapter. To be honest, I have yet to see someone use one of these in a regular scenario (not testing it for a review). And I have never used one in my personal life.

There are many services and products out there that defeat the purpose of owning an MHL adapter. We can use services like Netflix and Hulu Plus for streaming movies from practically any device. Including some TVs, and if you don’t own a smart TV you can access these services with gaming consoles, Bluray players, computers, etc.

As for other media like music, images and games, I usually either don’t need to display it in a screen larger than a phone/tablet or don’t care enough to buy an accessory for it. One can also use Media servers like imediashare, Plex, PlayOn and aVia to stream personal content to a larger screen. So for the few times I would use such an accessory, I have an alternative way to take care of it, albeit not as convenient.

Let’s not forget about DLNA, as well, which is coming to many of the newest Android devices. Regardless, it seems like many times we can find a reason not to get one of these. And very few of our Twitter followers mentioned that they do, indeed, use an MHL adapter regularly.

On the other hand, some of you may really like them. You can literally just plug-and-play. No need to configure apps and networks, no necessary internet connection and a generally less confusing experience. But how many users actually fall in this category.

We would like to find out and decided to reach out to all of you and see what you think. Are MHL adapters a thing of the past? Do you own one? If so, do you use it regularly? Go ahead and participate in the poll and let us know what you think in the comment section!

[polldaddy poll=6300893]

Edgar Cervantes

Don’t try older Samsung MHL adapters with the Galaxy S3! It won’t work

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  1. When I got my SGS1, I also bought a cheap 3.5mm stereo to composite cable, and only used it once or twice, not because the output in this case looked like ass, but because it’s just a hassle to connect your phone up to a TV, when there’s so many other ways of doing it. DLNA is what we use most here, since our samsung TV supports it, either from the phone directly via AllShare (or other) or from our DiskStation DLNA server after backing up to it.

    The only reason I might consider buying a (wireless++) HDMI adapter in the future would be for pixel-perfect screen capture demos of apps, since recording on the phone itself is slower & wonkier & requires root apps.

  2. i never connect my phone to anything else other than charger and pc.

  3. I don’t have room on my current phone to be storing HD movies so no real point in using the cable for me. Maybe once I get another phone that has a microSD card slot in addition to internal storage, I’ll consider it.

  4. DLNA is good enough for my use. Which is to show off

  5. The only connection I’ve been using is the 3.5mm aux from my phone to my car.

  6. MHL blows! I have a feeling I inspired this article with my rant about oems leaving off HDMI yesterday. ha! if not I’ll say it again. MHL is complete garbage!

    1. Agreed, Micro HDMI Ftw

      1. Absolutely. I read the headline and had to find out what MHL is. But then, I have a Motorola phone.

    2. It will be nice when it is main stream…charging the battery while connected is a HUGE plus

    3. MHL is not complete garbage, streaming 1080p video over differential pairs and recovering the clock is pretty impressive tbh this iis what you get when usual consumers start voicing their opinions on matters when they dont know the underlying principles. It also detect the impedance of the device connected to gauge whenther its a USB or HDMI connection and switch the stream appropriately. Its better than that proprietry apple connector so you dont have to pay £50 for a cable because its a standard with 5 big names working on it: Nokia, Samsung, Silicon Image, Sony and Toshiba. It’s what the industry needs right now innovation looking outside the box.

  7. I’m a consultant, and frequently stuck a night or four in a hotel. A lot of the hotels I stay at have Wifi and HDMI inputs to the TV, so I get to watch Netflix instead of flipping through “57 channels and nothing on.”

  8. I rarely use it, but if they are going to continually change the standard, I’m not going to bother purchasing any of them until they solidify.

  9. I just got one for my amaze 4g. The big problem was the t-mobile stores never stocked it. They finally did recently. It’s actually fairly cool to use on older tv’s.

  10. MHL is never going to be anything but a proprietary garbage interface. They need to stick with micro usb and micro hdmi. They are industry standards.

  11. I use HDMI from transformer prime daily for gaming and movies. I would have done the same with the gnex, but the mhl is so crap. The screen flickers and gets static.

    1. Might be a faulty cable then, on my Gnex the MHL adapter works like a charm. Never had any issues with it, I am thinking of buying a bluetooth mouse, so I can control my phone on my tv screen with a mouse, instead of through a cable connected phone

  12. no, i saved 300 for my phone, i dont wanna pay 30 more for a mhl adapter ontop of the hdmi cable, i have a xoom and got a micro hdmi cable for it and i love it, i dont wanna spend a extra 30 for that stupid adapter

  13. I have one, but don’t use it often.

  14. I ordered an adapter from Amazon (~$11) about a week after I purchased a Galaxy Nexus from Sprint. Tried it out to make sure it worked (which it did) and put it away. That’s where it’s most likely going to stay for awhile, but better to have it and not need it, than need it and not have it. Also purchased the necessary HDMI cable within the same transaction (~$5). Much lower prices through Amazon than Best Buy, carrier stores, or most other tech stores, especially if you shop around just a tad. :)

  15. MHL is complete crap. Any pontential benefits are completely nullified when you have to buy an expensive adapter, not only that, but a new one with every phone you get!

  16. I use it on a regular basis. Have a cottage that gets 3g, so I have the following setup: Droid Incredible 2 providing wifi hot spot to HTC flyer running netflix via mhl to our tv. Works great.

  17. I would if my phone supported it. However, if google does an android wide airplay style feature, I’d go for that. As it is, I think I’d still prefer an MHL to a Samsung/HTC proprietary link.

  18. i have an HDMI port on my droid charge, even have a cable for it.

    have NEVER used it.

  19. I don’t use mine a lot but it is nice to have. I mainly bought it to try it out. I think I would prefer to have an output like the Motorola phones.

  20. I have one for my evo 3D but have only used it a couple times :/

  21. MHL has been great for me and I picked up the adaptor for $11 at frys

  22. Lol I have a micro-HDMI port on my phone so I don’t need MHL.

  23. I love MHL, but the fact that Samsung is requiring a “special” MHL connector because of a “pin change” is total BS. It seems like something Apple would do, and if you insist on copying Apple, try not to copy the douchey stuff. It’s just an excuse to force people to buy THEIR accessories. I just found my excuse to skip the GSIII.

  24. Since today’s article I didn’t even know of the existence of the MHL adapter. Guess one always learns something new.

    I agree with the other comments that by changing the pin connection Samsung is trying to sell more accessories to consumers who already have the older type adapter. Its similar to an Apple strategy by making a proprietary conmection instead of using a standard micro USB or micro HDMI port.

  25. Only thing my phones ever connected to is my laptop or a pair of earphones

  26. I have the s2 and the mhl adapter. I bought it so I could use it with hotel tvs to watch my own films for free. Hotel tvs are often locked down so the only way to connect to it is using HDMI. I haven’t needed to use it much but I bought it on the basis that it could be re-used with future phone upgrades. Samsung changing the pin layout seems like a crappy money scamming idea. What justifiable reason could there be in making this change? I was already planning to skip the s3 because it looks dull and wasn’t a worthy upgrade for me. Perhaps I’ll skip Samsung altogether and give one of the other manufacturer’s handset a try. Overall, I think I should have saved my money and not bought the adapter in the first place.

  27. I find it stupid not being able to turn of the mobile display while connected to the TV. Why burn screen time??

  28. wow, so much hate just because of some adapter. all these people or most of them anyway that are bitching are the ones that werent gonna buy the s3 anyways. ” well i was gonna buy the s3 but now how could i, the 30$ adapter is simply a deal breaker” LMFAO!!!!

  29. I have one and I’m using it,great for showing your mobile app in a review meeting and play movies in hotels

  30. I use it a shitload. I travel a lot and almost all hotel TVs have HDMI. More than anything, it’s good for just playing music or watching a movie.

  31. I’ve never been much of a hockey fan.

  32. I looked at some HDMI cables for my GSII but they were all 6′ long, i.e. completely useless unless I wanted my face right up in the screen. I have heard similar comments as well. If manufacturers would just spend a few more pennies on cable of usable length, these would have sold better. In the end, wireless will surely replace all.

    1. Dude, just look on Amazon. Within the first page of results for hdmi cables, I’m seeing at least 5 instances of cables over 6 feet long, and one that’s 25 feet (again, on just the first page), and they’re selling for the same price of a 6 ft cable at Best Buy.

  33. $19 bucks, OEM branded Samsung MHL adapter for my note. Works like a charm on the stock ROM. REGULAR HDMI output. I don’t why people are complaining its pretty easy to use and works great…

  34. I don’t have a tv with an hdmi at the moment otherwise I’d be using it constantly. I hope they continue to put mhl in phones indefinitely.

  35. I bought one, haven’t used it much since I got it, but having the possibility is great. Of course there are other wireless technologies, but those require a relatively new TV or some box sitting beneath your tv. I can imagine that with photos that need quick sharing, it would work wonders…..(at least I upload all photos to G+,. so they are also on my phone whenever I want to share a quick view of them)

  36. Considering mobile gaming is getting better and better. Plus the addition and support of some great looking new game pads. I think it would be a great tool to add in for when you are at home or a friends house where a larger screen is available and portability isn’t a concern.

  37. Use mine all the time when there’s no dlna where im at. Perfect for netflix etc. Got a 10 ft usb and hdmi for dirt cheap so will reach from couch :)

  38. The problem with MHL is that you need the extra cable. If MHL would work with microUSB-to-USB it would be easier to use as most if not all television sets have one or more USB ports.

    If you could use a regular microUSB-to-USB cable it would save a lot of extra cables and headaches. Similar to DisplayLink, which does everything over USB. MHL has it’s own signalling and protocols, it doesn’t use USB or HDMI signalling or protocols at all to circumvent licencing issues.
    Also, the MHL feature set is not as complete as HDMI is. Both technologies should be in-sync. In order to fix both issues, the MHL Consortium should merge with either the HDMI Founders group, the USB Implementers Forum or preferrably both.

    Also, drivers should be open-source. This way it is easier for manufacturers, ROM builders and kernel writers to make things would properly.

  39. I had never even heard of an MHL adapter before reading this post.

  40. It’s always nice to have options & TV-Out is awesome. Like many mentioned already it comes in handy when traveling, or maybe wanting to show off some pics or videos to people so they don’t have to crowd around your phone. But they main reason I love it is for mirroring the phone on the monitors in the car, great for google nav, streaming tunes & TV & movies to keep the kids quite… it makes for a quick & simple carputer…

  41. It’s just like the video out cable that came with my samsung T100 camera years ago…collecting dust. The only device I ever bought a cable to hook up to my tv, as such, was my PSP2000 I had a few years ago…It got used a half a dozen times to watch movies that I bought on UMD for <$1…lmao…I believe for the cable to be truly useful, especially with smart TV's, we're going to need to see a massive jump in SD technology (aka bigger memory cards) or more carriers going to unlimited full speed data so the technology can be streamed. The only use I could even think of for hooking my phone to a tv now would just be to show a home movie taken with the camera on the phone…but how often does that happen with relatives can just check Youtube and Facebook??

  42. Connect phone through MHL to projector, turn on Phonejoy, load up SNESoid, relive childhood on a giant screen. Worth the $15 adapter…you bet!

  43. I have one and never use the adapter. Having to use and carry around an adapter with a portable device like a phone is pretty much useless. I’d rather just have HDMI out.

  44. Haven’t used this function… ever.

    But I have been caught in a situation where I would have like to have this feature. Got stuck using a REALLY slow computer (Pentium 4, 256mb ram…), if I could of connected to the larger screen with a bluetooth keyboard, I personally think my phone would have performed faster.

  45. I wanted to use one but the one I purchased was broke so I had to send it back for a refund. I’ll let you know when my new one comes in.

  46. i would really like to have nothing to do with HDMI, but i do have the cord

  47. Where’s a 10″ display with a built-in DLNA and MHL adapter with a (bluetooth?) touchscreen?

  48. I connect mine to my bedroom tv and run plex to stream movies. Its a great alternative to paying 100+ for inferior products.

  49. I bought an adaptor for my Galaxy Nexus, tried it out once and didn’t like how hot it made my phone so stopped using it.

  50. I liked the ability to take my phone on the road with me and plug it into a hotel room television to watch a movie off Netflix. Or to bring it over to a friends house to watch a movie. As someone who has all of their movie collection on their computer, it was the easiest way. Plus all my friends were quite impressed that I could play movies on television off my phone.

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