How to use your Sony Xperia S with your Sony TV and tablet
Having bought yourself the Sony Xperia S you're going to want to make the most of it, here’s an introduction to a couple of options you may have not known about beforehand.
How to watch phone content on your TV
Firstly in the box you have a mini HDMI cable, this gives you the facility to connect your phone to your television and view your videos and photos on the big screen. You can even navigate the menus by tapping away on your phone and viewing the content on the TV and play games, check emails, or surf the internet with your TV acting as a monitor.
As long as your TV has a HDMI port available you can use this on any set, saving the cost of buying a new one with internet and such built in, just plug it in and if the TV doesn't react automatically simply grab the remote control and change the AV input accordingly.
How to share files between your Sony products
Next up are the wireless functions, giving you the ability to share your files between Sony phones, televisions, tablets and even PlayStation 3 consoles, without the need for them to be physically connected to each other!
For the sake of this section we'll assume that you own all the following devices, so ignore the bits that don't apply to your current situation and if in the future you acquire a lovely new piece of tech, you can come back to it.
First steps - setting up your phone as a Media Server
- Starting with the Xperia S smartphone, say you want to share all the pictures and videos you've shot or even music that you have on your handset, start by connecting your phone to your home Wi-Fi network and ensuring that your internet-enabled Sony TV, PlayStation 3 and tablet are all connected to the same secure network.
- Once everything's connected, select the 'Connect devices' application in your phone's main menu, and on the next screen tap the menu key and select 'Media Server'.
- On this page tap the 'Share Contents' tab so that a tick appears in the box next to the title, once ticked your handset is now set up to broadcast as a media server, allowing any applicable device to now connect to your phone.
- You can change the name of your phone here to help you recognise when an item has found your Media Server, but it is optional and should be easy enough without changing from the default.
It is recommended that you keep the phone on this screen as you'll need to refer back to it when linking your other items, when a new device requests to join your server it will initially appear in the 'Pending devices' list in which you can set its access level, allowing it either full access to your phones files, moderate access or even no access if it's an unfamiliar item.
Adding a Sony TV to your file sharing network
If you have an internet-enabled Sony Bravia TV to add to your file sharing network, and it has either an Ethernet port or Wi-Fi built in, or a DLNA connection, this section will help you add the TV to your Media Server network. For other TV makes and models you'll need to refer to the specific user manual.
- Turn on your TV, ensuring it is connected to the same Wi-Fi network as your phone and click the 'Home' button on your remote to open the menu; you will likely need to scan for the DLNA devices for them to show as connected to your TV
- To scan for DLNA devices, go to settings on your menu then scroll to Network settings > Server display settings, and press 'Options' on your remote, then select 'Update list'
- Each server device will appear in the menu when found with your phone's server name appearing here, the files can then be found under each menu icon for Photo, Music or Video
- Scroll through the menu options and you will see the shared music, photos and videos from your device on your network under the Photo, Music or Video icons
You can then simply scroll to the desired music, video, or photo file, and click to play or view it.
How to add a PlayStation 3, PSP or PlayStation Vita to your file sharing network
Connecting your next gen Sony console to your phone is a very similar process to connecting your phone to a Sony TV.
- Using the menu navigate to Settings > Network Settings > Network Media Server, make sure this option is enabled in order to connect fully, once enabled exit to the main menu
- Once the server appears you'll be able to navigate the files in the same way as you would on a Sony TV, scrolling through the menu options and selecting your shared music, photos and videos from your device on your network under the Photo, Music or Video icons
- If there is no icon for your server select Search for media servers from under any of the Photo, Music or Video icons and let the PlayStation system manually scan for your phone
How to add a Sony Android tablet to your file sharing network
Finally if you're lucky enough to own any of the Sony tablet range this last section is for you.
- Enter the settings option from the main menu and select Wireless & Networks, just ensure you're tablet is connected to the same wireless network and then exit to the main menu
- From here tap the DLNA application, the next screen asks you if you wish to setup the media server now, so continue with this and your phone's media server should display in the centre box straight away, if not tap 'Find Servers' and scan for your phone there, once it is displayed select it and you'll be able to browse your phone's files, watch and even copy files across, providing you've remembered to allow the tablet access via the Pending Devices list
How to use your Sony tablet as a PlayStation 3 controller
As a little bonus hint for those PlayStation 3 and Sony tablet users, if you have a game on your tablet that you'd like to be able to play with a PlayStation 3 controller, simply take the cable for your controller and connect it to your tablet's mini USB port, hit the home button to sync the tablet with the controller, and there you'll have it! Now navigate the system using your joypad, this can done wirelessly now too by unplugging the USB cable, as long as your controller is charged.
Sony Live dock for Xperia S
To use PlayStation controllers, USB mice and keyboards with your Xperia S smartphone, you need a Sony Live Dock. You can customise what your phone does when it enters the dock, for instance set yourself an automatic beside alarm clock, connected seamlessly with your schedule.