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Apple TV for Conference Room Display vs. BenQ InstaShow

  • BenQ
  • 2022-12-20
Apple TV alternative - BenQ InstaShow wireless presentation system for conference room

Since its introduction in 2007, Apple TV has made it to millions of homes and increasingly to conference rooms. The system uses Apple’s AirPlay proprietary technology, which allows devices to use Apple TV to display content from Mac notebooks, iPads, and iPhones on a conference room display. With the rapid growth in screen mirroring solutions being used in meeting rooms and huddle spaces over the last few years, how does this solution compare with a commercial wireless presentation device such as the BenQ InstaShow? This article looks at how these two systems handle typical setups in collaboration rooms and huddle spaces.


Apple TV and BenQ InstaShow were designed for different purposes. The various models of Apple TV that use AirPlay were primarily designed as a consumer product to enable wireless streaming content such as movies in the home using built-in links to services such as iTunes and Netflix.


The BenQ InstaShow is a wireless presentation system that was designed for business users to enable multiple presenters to quickly present content with wireless convenience onto a TV or projector by plugging a button into their device instead of a traditional cable.


Both systems can be used in a conference room or huddle space, and do a good job of displaying presentations and videos from computers and tablets. The biggest difference between the two is that InstaShow is designed to work with all types of computers, mobile devices, and A/V systems such as media players, while Apple TV only works with Apple devices. However, Apple TV comes with a wide variety of streaming content that makes it easy to connect to content such as YouTube and ESPN videos without using a computer. For organizations that rely exclusively on Apple products, Apple TV has a "Conference Room" mode that enables presenters to use AirPlay to connect to a shared TV or projector in a meeting.


To compare these systems, we will look at the areas important to both IT staff and meeting room users, then draw our conclusions.

Is It Easy to Set Up?

Apple TV

Apple TV - conference room mode

Apple TV is easy to install. The unit plugs into power and the HDMI port of your display. Because the device operates as a wireless hub, it needs to be set up on the same network that will be used by the presenter. To ensure good performance, Apple has fourteen recommended settings for the Wi-Fi router. To convert Apple TV to business conference room use, settings must be changed to “conference room” on the device.

BenQ InstaShow

BenQ InstaShow wireless presentation system for conference room

InstaShow is designed for secure collaboration right out of the box in less than 10 minutes without IT support. Like Apple TV, users connect the receiver to a projector or display. The two InstaShow buttons are pre-paired to the receiver and ready to use. Testing by publication My Tech Decisions indicates it took only a few minutes to connect and use InstaShow in their meeting room.

Both systems are easy to install and setup. If you are comfortable with changing your network settings and only plan to use Apple products, Apple TV is a good choice. BenQ InstaShow is very easy to setup and does not require a network connection or any special apps to be loaded on a computer to work. This makes it easy to be installed in a typical meeting room or huddle space without IT support.

Can Visitors Use Them?

Huddle spaces and large meeting rooms often host vendors, consultants, and other outside visitors where ideas need to flow quickly to keep collaboration processes flowing. So, which of these two wireless systems are easier for visitors to use with their notebook computers and mobile devices?

Apple TV


For a visitor to use conference room displays with Apple TV, they must be using an Apple product such as a MacBook or iPad. If your visitors are using Windows notebooks or other devices such as Chromebooks, the system may not run over Apple TV unless they purchase a third-party program such as AirParrot.


For visitors with Apple products such as a MacBook, the user will need to log in to the same network as that of the Apple TV. Once logged in, the visitor can begin presenting by selecting the AirPlay button on their notebook, and mirroring their screen to the Apple TV or other devices.

BenQ InstaShow


To do screen mirroring to TVs or projectors with InstaShow, visitors simply need to plug an InstaShow transmitter button to their notebook using a USB-C connector or HDMI with USB power. No software needs to be installed on the visitor’s notebook. To switch presenters, the new presenter simply pushes their button to take over the screen.


InstaShow also makes it easy for visitors to connect to the display without using a button using Apple's AirPlay if they have a MacBook or iPad, or via Miracast if they have a Windows notebook or tablet.

BenQ InstaShow enables a conference room visitor to wirelessly collaborate, regardless of the type of notebook or device they are using. For both Mac and Windows users, InstaShow also saves time for visitors since they do not need to log into a network. InstaShow also enables a visitor to easily share content using other A/V devices such as a document camera or media player.

Is the Data Protected?

Security is a major component in choosing a system for business screen mirroring. From product launches to salary reviews, it is essential that information shared during collaboration sessions stay private. There are two areas of concern for most companies.

  1. Presentation content being watched or recorded by unauthorized employees or hackers.
  2. Using network vulnerabilities on wireless presentation systems to gain access to company networks.

Apple TV

A quick Google search for enterprise encryption on Apple TV will tell you that Apple TV is designed primarily for streaming consumer video and audio, so security isn’t exactly a priority on the product. Since AirPlay is integrated into iOS, the risks of vulnerabilities vary from year to year. According to Apple’s developer support, AirPlay can be setup to use encryption keys from a server, but this is a more complex process outlined on Apple's developer site, and not something meant for consumers.

BenQ InstaShow

InstaShow is designed for security. The transmitter buttons use a closed network and advanced 128-bit encryption to ensure that each presentation transmission cannot be viewed or recorded by unauthorized external or internal users. As an additional security measure, the system can operate without exposing or connecting to the corporate network. Each InstaShow model has been tested and certified secure against CVSS v3 vulnerabilities as well as WPA2 KRACK attacks. WDC30 even has WPA3 authentication. BenQ also provides customers a detailed security white paper outlining the various levels of protection built into the device.


The security requirements for consumer products like Apple TV and commercial wireless presentation systems are significantly different. The BenQ system ensures that every presentation is encrypted and protected from unauthorized viewing.


Since InstaShow does not require a corporate network connection, it can reduce threats to the corporate network as well.

Which One Should I Choose, Apple TV or BenQ InstaShow?

If you are looking for a low-cost consumer wireless screen mirroring solution that enables you to easily access streaming services and occasionally do wireless presentations on a TV or projector using a MacBook or iPad, then Apple TV is a good choice.


If you are looking for an Apple TV alternative that can be regularly used in a collaborative environment such as a conference room with screen mirroring, consider a properly secure and independent wireless presentation system like BenQ InstaShow. Though more expensive than Apple TV, it is purpose-designed for business uses in huddle spaces and conference rooms.


With its USB-C or HDMI and USB power transmitter buttons, InstaShow lets you quickly connect to any current MacBook, and also connect to older Windows notebooks and A/V devices such as document cameras and media players. InstaShow WDC20/WDC20C and WDC30 even offer additional connectivity without using a transmitter button via AirPlay and Miracast for flexible and effective collaboration from supported devices. Finally, advanced encryption and other security features on InstaShow protect from unauthorized internal or external recording of sensitive presentations.

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