How to use Samsung DeX on your Galaxy phone

Samsung DeX on a TV from a Fold 4
(Image credit: Nicholas Sutrich / Android Central)

Samsung DeX is an ingenious way to turn your phone into a powerful laptop or desktop PC, and it couldn't be easier to use. You can even connect a keyboard and mouse to your phone for the ultimate experience and leave that laptop at home (or in its bag).

These days, most premium Samsung Galaxy smartphones (opens in new tab) support DeX out of the box and can be used on just about any monitor via an HDMI to USB-C cable, or completely wirelessly on supported displays. You can even use it on a PC or Mac if you just want to have your phone on your existing desktop while you work or play.

How to use Samsung DeX on your Samsung Galaxy phone

Using DeX with a cable

The easiest way to use Samsung DeX is by plugging your phone into a TV or monitor with an HDMI port. We recommend using the uni USB-C to HDMI Cable below but any HDMI to USB-C cable should work just fine. Grab your cable and follow the directions below.

  1. Access your quick toggles by pulling down on the status bar twice.
  2. Scroll over until you see the DeX button, then tap it.
  3. If you don't see DeX, open up your system settings, tap Connected Devices, then tap Samsung Dex.
  4. Once DeX has been enabled, plug the USB-C cable into your phone and the HDMI end into your TV or monitor.
  5. A desktop UI should appear on your monitor in a few seconds.

Enabling DeX via the quick toggles pane on a Galaxy phone

(Image credit: Android Central)

Once this UI appears, your Galaxy phone's screen will turn into a trackpad. This functions like a trackpad on a laptop and is used to move the on-screen cursor around. If you want a proper desktop setup, we recommend these keyboards and mice.

Using DeX wirelessly

Wireless DeX is the dream but it's not going to work well for everyone. For starters, you'll want to make sure you have one of the best Wi-Fi 6 routers (opens in new tab) to ensure your connection between the phone and monitor are solid.

Second, you'll want to ensure you have a DeX-compatible monitor (opens in new tab). In my case, I've got two TVs that work with DeX: a TCL TV with Roku built-in, and another TV that has a Chromecast Ultra hooked up to one of the HDMI ports. Either of these will work. Just make sure all the devices are on the same network.

Once you've got all the necessary prerequisites, follow the directions below to get glorious DeX wirelessly on your favorite display.

  • Access your quick toggles by pulling down on the status bar twice.
  • Scroll over until you see the DeX button, then tap it.
  • If you don't see DeX, open up your system settings, tap Connected Devices, then tap Samsung Dex.
  • Tap DeX on your TV or Monitor.
  • A list of compatible wireless displays on your Wi-Fi network will appear in the connect wirelessly box.
  • Select the TV or monitor you want to wirelessly connect to.
  • Tap Start now to begin casting DeX to your TV or monitor.
  • You may have to accept the connection on your TV or monitor using your remote.
  • In a few seconds, a desktop UI should appear on your monitor.

How to wirelessly cast DeX from a Galaxy phone to a TV or monitor

(Image credit: Android Central)

You'll control this desktop UI the same way you would in the wired step above. We recommend getting a dedicated keyboard and mouse for your Galaxy phone if you want to use DeX regularly.

How to use Samsung DeX on a PC or Mac

  1. If you're going to be using Samsung DeX on your Galaxy phone with a Mac or Windows PC, you'll need to first download the DeX app for whichever respective platform you are on from https://www.samsung.com/us/explore/dex/ (opens in new tab).

(Image credit: Source: Android Central)
  1. Click to download, and follow the installation prompts.

(Image credit: Source: Android Central)
  1. Once the DeX app has been downloaded and installed, plug your phone in via a USB-A to USB-C cable.

(Image credit: Source: Android Central)
  1. Read the Samsung DeX pop up menu and click OK.
  2. If you experience any issues connecting, you may need to try unplugging and replugging your cable or turning off Android File Transfer.
  3. You should see a notification in your status bar that DeX is available. Click on that notification.
  4. When you see a popup notification that asks Start Casting with Samsung DeX? Tap Start now.

(Image credit: Source: Android Central)
  1. Now you should see a desktop view of your Samsung Galaxy device on your Mac, PC, or monitor. You can click on any of the apps on the "desktop" or on the navigation/settings menus at the bottom right and left of the screen.

(Image credit: Source: Android Central)
  1. If you click on the bottom left of the screen, you can access a version of the app drawer, home, and back buttons. You can also get some tips and tricks for navigating the UI, and logout of DeX.
  2. If you click on the bottom right of the screen, you can access the quick settings and notification menus.

(Image credit: Source: Android Central)
  1. Click on the grid icon on the bottom left menu to access your phone's app drawer.

(Image credit: Source: Android Central)
  1. Click on an app to open and use it as if you were on your phone.

(Image credit: Source: Android Central)

You can resize windows and apps, change the desktop background and wallpaper, and even take screenshots from your new phone desktop. Pretty powerful stuff!

Samsung DeX works on the latest versions of Windows and macOS.

Jeramy Johnson
Editor-in-chief

Jeramy is the Editor-in-Chief of Android Central. He is proud to help *Keep Austin Weird* and loves hiking in the hill country of central Texas with a breakfast taco in each hand. You can follow him on Twitter at @jeramyutgw.