How to screencast an Android device to Chrome or Chrome OS

Anyone with the Android(s goog) SDK installed can show off a connected Android device screen on a computer. Can you do it in a browser though? Yes you can, making for both a fun party trick and a useful way for developers to debug web applications on Android devices of various sizes.

Google’s François Beaufort offers up the steps on Google+ to make the magic happen, which requires the latest experimental devtools for screencasting in Chrome. You’ll need to be running the Dev channel of either the Chrome browser or Chrome OS and then follow this process:

  • Enable chrome://flags/#enable-devtools-experiments and chrome://flags/#remote-debugging-raw-usb flags in Chrome Dev Channel and restart
  • Go to chrome://inspect and plug your Android Device (make sure USB Debugging is ON before)
  • Allow USB debugging by tapping “OK”
  • At this point your Android device should appear in chrome://inspect
  • Open Chrome Beta for Android and visit a website
  • On your computer, open the DevTools, click on the Gear icon in the bottom-right corner, on “Experiments”, check “Enable screencast” and close the DevTools
  • Finally, click on the “Inspect” link and click on the brand new “Screencast” icon in the bottom left corner to enable it

Once you walk through the steps, you’ll see a virtual Android device in the browser, complete with an active screen that shows what’s on your phone or tablet. Interaction between the two is also possible as shown in Beaufort’s sample video: