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Google Chromecast (google.com)
578 points by Zaheer on July 24, 2013 | hide | past | web | favorite | 315 comments

This is exactly what I've been wanting the Apple TV to be for ages. The only thing Apple TV is actually good for is Airplay. There doesn't need to be an OS or a UI for the Apple TV: your phone or tablet will be a better experience for typing and searching for content every time. Its a fool's errand to try to design a UI for a TV that isn't dreadfully painful to use: no one ever wants to interact with something 10 feet away.

This is what the future of TV should be: people should just think of TV's the way they think of their jamboxes: a higher fidelity dumb pipe for their existing content. If Apple turned the Apple TV into an HDMI dongle that solely included AirPlay and included it for free with every iPad and iPhone they sold, it would truly disrupt TV. If I knew for a fact that every new iDevice owner was necessarily and AppleTV owner, I would immediately start making AppleTV-enabled experiences. Overnight the iPad would become a real competitor to game consoles as well.

It just seems so obvious that this is the right way to go. The apps should live on the brain (your device), and the TV should just be an auxiliary screen, nothing more (We certainly don't need YET ANOTHER SDK for writing TV apps). Here's a fun exercise: go to your local Apple Store and ask them what an Apple TV is for today. Then watch them fumble around mentioning "oh if you have Netflix" and "isn't cable hard to use" and just the sheer lack of vision for the product. If it was just AirPlay it would be as easy to explain as an iPod speaker. If they did this, then you could also imagine indie people shipping TV Shows as apps as a viable model for the first time, completely skirting Cable networks.

Maybe you want Airplay to be more the focus of Apple TV, but that state of affairs doesn't sound at all like Chromecast.

Chromecast seems to be a method for driving-devices to send pointers to internet video streams or web pages, for the dongle to queue, download and then send to the display. The apps/content don't live on the mobile device at all. They live on remote internet servers. The device is just feeding a queue.

I'd also add a wrinkle to your statement about devices being awesome as typing/searching interfaces: that's true, but they come with negatives.

The real problem with "device as brains", is that your device does many other jobs. And you may not want those jobs in-your-face when you're watching a movie, or showing pictures, or even just trying to add background-music to a dinner party.

Devices are more difficult to deal with when you just want to pause something, the notifications are there, the temptations are there and the social negatives are there [1].

But while everyone's tossing out Airplay wish-lists -- it'd be nice if I could airplay a movie to my TV but have the audio still piped to the headphones.

[1] You may be trying to switch playlists, but to everyone else it looks for all the world like texting.

While its primary mode is indeed method-for-sending-pointers-to-media, it also has an option for streaming the contents of a Chrome tab directly to the Chromecast device [1] ala-VNC. With caveats: that feature is still in beta and requires a fast computer/connection.

[1] https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/google-cast/boadge...

Chrome appears to be becoming a full fledged operating system.

And they will call it ChromeOS.

(its what runs the Chromebooks. http://www.google.com/chromeos )

Isn't it using Miracast internally?

Will it work with Windows 8.1 which has Miracast support?



I hope they work with standards instead of creating proprietary and incompatible protocols.

It is using open standards upnp+rest api+websockets. The mirroring part is done with opus and vp9. Miracast on the other hand is drm(big players only) over drm(restricted content) over drm(it will only work with closed source software). Miracast will only live in heads of Balmer worshipers and maniacs, who love to to create long power point presentations with lots of bullet points.

Do you realize that Miracast has been Android's screen sharing mechanism since 4.2?


The DRM in Miracast is pretty much the same as the stuff sent over HDMI. Wouldn't surprise me if the Chromecast requires HDCP like Apple TV does.

Also, if your assertions are correct, please update the Wikipedia page, which states that "At present time, Miracast Source is mainly active on Android platforms." which seems to conflict with "only ... Balmer worshipers".

"to queue, download and then send to the display"

According to AvsForum news: "streams it directly to the Chromecast device from the cloud". So you are right about it being somewhat different from airPlay, but it clearly intends to be seamless, and not have a queue / download cycle, but stream it just as it would to your browser.

It also says "including Youtube, Netflix, and Google Play, Vudu, Hulu... anything that plays in a Chrome browser" which sounds a little different from "a method for driving-devices to send pointers to internet video streams". The latter seems to imply programming changes on the provider's part, whereas the former clearly does not. (I don't actually know which is true, just pointing out the differences).

>"streams it directly to the Chromecast device from the cloud". So you are right about it being somewhat different from airPlay

AirPlay will send a URL to the Apple TV if possible. If you're streaming a video from a web page, it most likely will just send the URL to the Apple TV. The only communication with the device is the control channel.

'queue' was referring to chromecast's touted ability for, say, me to be able to send a video to the chromecast and then you to send one for it to play 'next'.

And 'download' was to make explicit the chromecast is downloading the content from the internet itself; it's not taking a videostream from the device as in the Airplay/"device-as-brains" scenario.

I'm not sure there's any difference between the phrasings in your second paragraph. I certainly didn't intend to imply anything different.

I've set up my $99 OUYA to do this (mostly). I've installed a native YouTube app on it (YouTube for Google TV) and installed Flash support for the included Android browser. I also wrote a small client/server Android app [1] that allows the client to share YouTube videos, web pages, basically anything URI-based from various apps' built-in "share" UI and the content will appear on the TV (using whatever app is suited for the URI being opened).

[1] http://bhspitmonkey.github.io/VuDo-Android/

Wi-fi isn't good enough. I can barely get AirPlay to stream music reliably ten feet away for half an hour (oh no! somebody in the next apartment turned on their microwave!), I can't imagine video being even remotely reliable, and certainly not at decent quality.

However, Netflix etc. work fine over wi-fi, because they're downloading and buffering the compressed stream itself, and then feeding that via the HDMI port to the TV.

Chromecast appears to be able to download the queued content over wi-fi, and then transmit via HDMI, which is a much more reliable way to go, given the state of wi-fi.

Sounds like you need a new router with a 5ghz channel.

That said, I don't know what's going on with your Airplay's music streaming, but the bitrate of music is far below Netflix's. It shouldn't matter much though, I stream my desktop in nearly lagless 1080p to my MBP via Splashtop. The compression isn't really that bad.

Sounds like you need a new router with a 5ghz channel.

According to this review[1] it won't be useful for the Google Chromecast: "Internally, the hardware supports 2.4GHz Wi-Fi 802.11, which isn't quite as nice as the dual-band Wi-Fi offered on Roku's Streaming Stick."

[1] http://reviews.cnet.com/digital-media-receivers/google-chrom...

Well, I'm talking about compressed Netflix bitrate, vs. only losslessly compressed AirPlay audio. The Netflix stream is bigger, but the bitrate of music isn't tiny.

But it's not the bitrate that matters so much -- it'll work perfect for 20 minutes, and then completely fail for 2, then come back perfectly again.

I think the issue with my wireless is I'm in the middle of Manhattan and there are 40 wi-fi networks I can see, so it's already a little tricky. But whenever I turn on my microwave, transmission completely drops. So it's basically anytime I or any neighbor in five directions turns on their microwave.

5ghz channel sounds like a great idea, unfortunately I can't figure out from any manuals or docs whether my Zeppelin Air supports 5ghz or not -- the official specifications and manual just say "supports Wi-Fi". [Edit: Googling forums suggests it only supports "g", not "n". So, no dice. Oh well.]

I have an 802.11n router using 5Ghz. When streams are over 10Mbps (common for 1080p streams) I run into problems all the time over WiFi from my computer to my Apple TV. It's not even interference (the channel is pretty clean). It's prefab concrete walls – they don't like WiFi.

I can barely get AirPlay to stream music reliably ten feet away for half an hour

I don't think that is the typical experience.

It would seem that you, like me, have a shit airplay receiver. Airplay should have nothing to do with distance, if you have a wifi connection, you're fine. And if you can stream hd video from the internet over wifi (ie: youtube), then you can stream it to another device on your network using the same connection.

Now if that device habitually drops the connections, or doesn't support video, it's a problem with the device, not the technology.

> This is exactly what I've been wanting the Apple TV to be for ages. The only thing Apple TV is actually good for is Airplay. There doesn't need to be an OS or a UI for the Apple TV: your phone or tablet will be a better experience for typing and searching for content every time. Its a fool's errand to try to design a UI for a TV that isn't dreadfully painful to use: no one ever wants to interact with something 10 feet away.

Apple distributes a free app which lets you type and control the Apple TV from your iPhone or iPod.


Yes I know, but:

1. The app is terrible. It takes forever to connect and the remote is harder to use than the real remote (swipe up to simulate pressing up, ugh). Typing on the phone is also frustrating when the realtime search results show up on the TV, it should all just be on the phone!

2. The remote app shows how Apple completely misses the point: the remote app is designed to be secondary to the TV. You're still looking at the TV while fiddling with the phone. The experience should be completely on your phone. There's no need for a movie app on the AppleTV, just go to the iTunes Store on your iPad, hit rent, and then have it notice there's an Apple TV on the network and ask to play it there. That way I'm quickly swiping through movies and looking at content through a gesture mechanism people actually like (touch) vs one people hate (TV).

> You're still looking at the TV while fiddling with the phone. The experience should be completely on your phone.

But the people sitting with you also get to see the search results come up, and together you can decide what previews to watch, etc. This is how it works in my household, and wouldn't work as well if the phone was where all the UI action is, with the TV solely a dumb display.

The TV doesn't have to be blank while you do this. You could be searching on the phone and seeing results (best for the searcher), and the TV could solely show results (as opposed to half the screen being taken up by a ridiculous keyboard). Best of both worlds.

I have a boxee and I'd been thinking about how to implement this for a while.

It seems like it should be possible to have a box act as a web server proxy where it mirrors a web page to several displays.

It would be pretty slick if you could get a simple http proxy to support screen mirroring like this, because then it wouldn't matter what combination of set top box / phone / tablet you have... you could mirror anything.

My co-worker was just telling me he wants to show his kids some YouTube videos, but the "suggested videos" are always R-Rated. So, keeping all of the browsing on the phone would be a huge plus for him.

>just go to the iTunes Store on your iPad, hit rent, and then have it notice there's an Apple TV on the network and ask to play it there

Set your iPad's output to AirPlay on your Apple TV and do that. AirPlay itself requires zero interaction with an on-TV interface.

And you can use the Remote app to directly access your iTunes libraries and select & play content without using the TV interface.

you can connect a Bluetooth keyboard now.

I find it a pain to get my phone/tablet and 1) wake it up 2) unlock it 3) type password 4) close running app 5) scourge screens for the remote app, and 6) wait for it to start and connect, sometimes it takes a while. It's infinitely easier to grab the aluminum remote or bluetooth keyboard and just press a key.

You're also missing the fact that the AppleTV is a shared device. It doesn't need locking/protection, and can host content for everybody, instead of each person having their own apps and media (and multiple netflix/itunes accounts).

Except you don't necessarily have to do 2, 3, 4, 5 or 6 with this. It either has controls over lock screen or in the notifications tray depending on the app. (and most users don't use passwords anyway. So really it's just a matter of picking up your phone and turning it on, which is usually easier than finding a remote.

-- "and most users don't use passwords anyway"

Is this true? Everyone I know with a smartphone -- everyone -- uses a password.

I have a similar feeling to you — that phones and tablets are better for browsing and queuing data that gets sent to the TV.

I have been putting this into practice over the last 4 months with an Apple TV, various iPhones and iPads, and VLC Streamer / Netflix.

I find that I still prefer browsing Netflix with the Apple TV remote using the Apple TV Netflix app. I don't know why. I think it's because the remote is tiny, and doesn't require me to look at it to use it. My thumb naturally finds the bumps and grooves and navigates the Apple TV UI.

I'm becoming convinced that as cool as using a phone or tablet to control my TV is, it's not actually what I will gravitate towards. And is in the end, harder in most cases than using a simple remote.

> There doesn't need to be an OS or a UI for the Apple TV: your phone or tablet will be a better experience for typing and searching for content every time

I could not disagree more. I understand your point, and on an intellectual level, completely agree with it. However, I never used HBO Go until it showed up on my Apple TV. I have a Mac mini hooked up to my TV, but routinely use Netflix on the Apple TV. I would kill for a Plex app for the Apple TV, even though I have it running on the Mac mini, and have it set up to use a remote. I can't explain it, it just feels better.

Matter of fact both Plex & XBMC happily run on an ATV2 - may I direct your attention to their forum http://forums.plexapp.com/index.php/forum/76-apple-tv-2nd-ge...

Regarding your wish of a Plex app on the the Apple TV: You know that you can have XBMC on your Apple TV today? Plex is a fork of XBMC, which in my opinion is the better media center, iterating and introducing new features way faster.

Wow I wanted the same thing as well. For some time now I have been thinking of hacking AirPlay support into my TV (it runs Linux) but I worry about its lifespan.

I would totally buy this and hack it instead.

Possible integration with Google Now would be tres cool, too. Talk to search... yum... "Netflix, play star trek on my TV"

One downside to this: a lack of group browsing. Right now I have a PC attached to my TV- it's kind of old and I'm considering just replacing it with this ChromeCast thing. But when I have people over and we're watching a movie we browse the selection as a group- it'll be a shame not being able to do that.

So the way my friends and I currently use the Apple TV is we all kind of just try to Airplay stuff from our phones and whatever randomly wins, wins. It would be cool to keep that same interaction, just with a little more structure: perhaps the videos get queued instead of all of them losing instead of one.

You can do it if the app supports it. Remember the demo earlier today of the YouTube app pausing both an iPhone and Android as the pause button was pressed? If it can share status information via wifi and the web, you can imagine a "Party Mode" or "Party Playlist" that does the same thing across multiple devices, linking them because they all see the same ChromeCast device.

If it works with YouTube Leanback this will be possible for YouTube at least. Multiple phones/tablets can hook up to the same session and queue videos to watch next.

Theres a third party product, AirParrot, that gives you AirPlay mirroring from your Mac or PC.

Unless you want to work on your Macbook while watching a movie...

Have you tried iMediaShare? much simple and support DLNA and Airplay

I think people aren't understanding how awesome this technology is:

1. Every time someone shows you a YouTube video, you spend 10% of your time watching it and the other 90% thinking about that one video you know of that's funnier. With Chromecast, you can queue that sucker up for nexties right from your own phone, without interrupting the video that's currently playing.

2. Chromecast does NOT use the resources of the device used to control the TV for processing...its don't on the dongle itself. This will save battery power, minimize bandwidth consumption, and you can do other things with your phone while watching things on the TV.

3. If it can run Chrome, it can cast to Chromecast. Apple, Microsoft, and Google devices playing together in one ecosystem. No more throwing the babies out with the bathwater.

4. $35.00. Thirty-five dollars for a device that ups the WAF most HTPC nerds have dreamed of for years! I would have bought this at $100!

This is what the Nexus Q was meant to be, but hardware drove the price down dramatically.

I haven't been this excited about a new piece of hardware since the iPhone. This is a game changer.

> 3. If it can run Chrome, it can cast to Chromecast.

That's probably the long-term goal, but currently the list of "Can run Chrome" overlaps, but does not subsume, the list of "can cast to Chromecast". Particularly, Linux and ChromeOS devices can run Chrome, but (with the exception of the Chromebook Pixel) cannot cast to Chromecast.

Is it explicitly stated somewhere that you can't cast from a linux box with Chrome installed? It let me install the Chrome extension on Linux at least.

It doesn't, but it doesn't say it's compatible:

> Chromecast is compatible with WiFi-enabled Android 2.3+ smartphones and tablets; iOS 6.0+ iPhones, iPads, and iPods; Chrome for Mac® and Chrome for Windows®; and Chromebook Pixel. Power cord required (not shown).

edit - although this article claims it does: http://gigaom.com/2013/07/24/chromecast-shows-how-google-is-...

We'll have to wait for some more information, I think.

Most hardware specs don't mention anything about linux compatibility, even if it does work. Because unfortunately, the overwhelming majority of people don't use linux :(

The specs for my mouse, speakers, microphone, keyboard, and monitors all don't mention linux. Some of them don't even mention mac. And with the exception of my keyboard and mouse, they all work on linux (and the mouse sort of works, just the DPI gets wonky as hell).

I don't know for sure, but I can't imagine this not working on linux.

It works with crome v29

I'll be interested to see how this all works once I get my devices. Because its not relying on the processing power of the device in question, I wonder why it wouldn't work on any device running Chrome.

I did notice during the Presser that the Chrome browser had two cast icons; one in the bottom right he keyed in on, and one where normal extensions go.

> I'll be interested to see how this all works once I get my devices. Because its not relying on the processing power of the device in question, I wonder why it wouldn't work on any device running Chrome.

As others have pointed out on the thread, the limiting factor is probably the need to encode video on the sending device for the casting Chrome tabs feature, which probably is going to be an issue on low-end Chromebooks (but, I would imagine, would also be a feature on low-end devices running Windows Chrome.)

It may be that it relies on Chrome features that don't exist on low-end chromebooks (and, if it involves licensed technology, it may be something that isn't licensed for low-end Chromebooks.)

If when in local mode its leaving the rendering up to the initiating device, I can definitely see that being a limiting factor.

Perhaps the reason it's in 'beta' then is that DIAL doesn't have the provisions in place for low end unit to unit, low latency performance. Hopefully enabling this on the lower end devices amps up the usefulness even further.

The AppleTV can do everything this does, plus real-time mirroring of any app. It's more expensive, and AirPlay doesn't have a queue, but this is hardly game-changing.

Never underestimate the power of the price point.

This also throws down the gauntlet regarding the walled garden in hardware interactivity. Even Apple zealots I work with begrudgingly nod their heads in agreement that vendor lock-in is a destructive to innovation.

Agreed! The one thing that worries me about this is underpowered hardware. If they made the UI not suck (read: not take seconds to respond to button presses) then I'll be all over this. It'll end up being what Google TV should have been.

It sounds like it has no UI. It simply shows video streams.

This is correct. It has a screen that shows up when nothing is playing, but all navigation and control is handled by all the other devices.

Exactly. In truth, there is nothing preventing you from playing Crysis (other than a terrible response time and a poor quality video stream) on this with nothing else but this and a wireless keyboard/mouse. This is the true dumb terminal. The developers SDK is probably more about connecting devices or having them communicate with the chromecast rather than being an app repository.

The more I think about it, the more I hope this is where they going with this. To borrow a very damaged phrase, this might as much about the cloud/virtual computing as it is about streaming and music.

I don't get it. I have an HTPC, and I watch Youtube on it all the time. I will often pause what I am watching to look something up related to the video I am watching. I don't have a personal phone as I get by fine with my work phone. It's a blackberry, so not compatible anyway. Also, when watching TV, its with the family, and we all are interested in what we look up. As far as I know, this only does some video, and doesn't send web pages to the screen. Yes, it's $35, but it's pretty limited from what I can see.

This is a different strategy. The idea here is to not make the tv the UI/smart device. Instead, the phone or whatever else is the UI/smart device. The TV remains a dumb display. Personally, I think it's a better strategy. We'll see what happens.

It's limited compared to what you can already do, but that's because you have a HTPC. Same for people who have a Google TV device, an Apple TV device, a Roku or whatever media box or media center plugged in to their TV. To you and me, who don't mind learning how to use a media center device, this doesn't really change anything.

The Chromecast is a device for your mom; something where she can just take her iPad and press "send to TV" and it appears on her TV.

I don't have much interest in this and was just skimming over the comments but I have to thank you -- your comment got my attention.

My mother (on the complete opposite end of the "techie" spectrum from me) watches soap operas on her iPad every few days while laying in bed. I'm certain she'd much rather watch them on the huge TV across the room instead.

> The Chromecast is a device for your mom; something where she can just take her iPad and press "send to TV" and it appears on her TV.

I was trying to figure out what I'd use this device for and you've answered that question for me. I'm ordering one of these for mom.

I realise it's twice the price, but an Apple TV will be much simpler to use, and will work with almost all apps on her iPad that play video (and audio). That includes all the built-in apps and nearly all store-bought apps.

There's a strong possibility your mother's soaps are being played in a way that's unsupported by the Chromecast.

> I realise it's twice the price, but an Apple TV will be much simpler to use

But it's made by Apple and will require you to install iTunes and iCloud on everything you own and it will only work if you throw away all the equipment you already own and replace them with Apple-made devices.

That's potentially quite a grab of money.

But that's just the smallest cost: The only reason ever to buy Apple is if you're willing to go all in. Choosing Apple is trading away your freedom. And as a guy who likes having options, that's a cost I will never be willing to pay.

The person in question already owns an iPad, so there's no more to install or buy.

iTunes is not required. iCloud is not required. Your comment is a troll.

I bought the iPad for her this last Christmas. She has yet to "install iTunes and iCloud on everything [she] owns" and is getting along just fine.

(Side note: I'm an open source zealot, my e-mail address ends in @gnu.org, and my primary laptop runs Debian GNU/Linux. I also own a MacBook Pro and an iPhone. I like having options too.)

But to use an Apple TV to play or display anything from your network, you will need to publish it via a "iTunes library".

This will require you to install iTunes. If on Windows, iTunes will completely hijack your machine, steal all file-associations and if you're lucky (like I was) completely molest all ID3-tags when attempting to clean up music-metadata, meaning the only "good" copy left of my music's meta-data was the iTunes library. How convenient is that for Apple, eh?

I had to manually go and tag 10000+ MP3s to make them usuable again outside iTunes. But I did that, because to me, choice matters.

If I need to go through that shit again to get an Apple TV to work.... Yeah. Not happening. Ever.

Fuck that shit. I don't say that often on hacker news, but seriously: Fuck that shit.

You clearly haven't used an Apple TV for many years.

did it cost $35?

the easiest answer I've come up with is that yes... WE have been doing this for quite some time. I have several devices I can push to including an HTPC that requires more finagiling than it should.

This takes those this us media geeks have been doing for years and empowers those that don't want to deal with the early adopter hassles and makes it just work.

Not to mention the end result is more attractive and usable.

>This is a game changer.

Completely agree. This is potentially an incredibly disruptive innovation. Provided third parties (TV Networks, Vimeo, etc.) write apps for this, I think it will radically change the way people watch TV.

No-one wants another box with another clumsy interface. They just want to watch what they see on their phone or laptop on a better screen.


What this is is another proprietary technology that Google has chosen to adopt over open standards such as WFD and Miracast. After tuning off support for jabber, deprioritizing rss, yet another step in that direction from a company that touts open standards for its own benefits. Shame!

> Power cord required (not shown).

What the hell is this about a "power cord". The specs and details are totally not clear. Is this not powered by HDMI? If it requires a power cord, these images are deceptive marketing.

Only MHL HDMI is capable of providing power, AFAIK. 'Regular' HDMI is capable of data transmission only.

A power cord is included in the box, according to The Verge. You can power it either via one of your TV's USB ports, or an A/C jack: http://cdn2.sbnation.com/entry_photo_images/8651957/2013-07-...

"The power adapter is an optional requirement. In fact, most modern TV's with HDMI 1.4 or higher spec are supported. The Chromecast can draw power from the HDMI port it's plugged into. If your TV doesn't support that, there's also a USB cable and power adapter included in the box. I have a 2012 LG LED and a 2013 Lenovo 27" Monitor with HDMI input and the ports power it with no cable."

Source: http://www.amazon.com/review/RBCJ03NLRAHIF/

It's pretty [1] standard [2] to not include cords in product pictures.

1. https://www.apple.com/appletv/

2. https://www.apple.com/imac/

Yeah, but this is the size of a USB stick, with that comes the expectation/assumption that there is no power cord.

Really funny. Everybody else does it. Even though two devices are not comparable in form factor. Why it is in minuscule fine print though? Please ...

Really not a problem.. The power cord is only required on certain HDMI ports.. and it likely won't be needed on future/modern HDMI ports.

Why is this even an issue?

"Everyone else does it" has never been a reason, only an excuse.

This isn't even the same as devices that always require AC power but don't show a cord. It's basically a method of providing backwards-compatibility with HDMI ports that don't provide power, but if you're using the state-of-the-art TVs they show the product with, there's no power cord necessary.

It seems pretty clear from the first picture that it's a male HMDI plug on one end and a female plug (which looks like the standard Android phone USB plug) on the other end. I don't see any images of the device plugged into a TV without a power cord (correction: there is one animation in the Plug and Play section if you mouse over). The images are just of the device on its own, so it doesn't seem deceptive to me.

You comment made me curious: is it possible for things to be powered by HDMI? There is definitely a 5V pin as part of the HDMI spec, but I can't find a good source for details.

> I don't see any images of the device plugged into a TV without a power cord.

From the "Plug and Play" section:


The only place I see any mention of a power cord is in 10px #d1d1d1 font on a white background.

Correction noted. I hadn't moused over that spot.

The 5V pin delivers 50mA. Enough to be tantalizing, insufficient for current reality.

Well this is disappointing.

If your t.v. has an HDMI port it more than likely has a USB as well. Not a big deal.

> If your t.v. has an HDMI port it more than likely has a USB as well.

This is probably true for current new TVs, but HDMI ports were common on HDTVs before USB ports were, and not everyone replaces their TV every year.

Actually, many (perhaps even most) TV USB ports don't provide power (or good enough quality power) for anything beyond basic thumb drives. It's also possible for ports not to offer power unless the right handshake is made by the device. Also, some TVs have a USB port which is only for diagnostic use, and can provide unsteady/harmful power output.

However, I'm guessing this device ships with a USB cable + wall wart for everyone else.

It does....

Neither of my TVs have USB, but both have HDMI. I'd hazard a guess that the older "brand new HD" TVs that came with HDMI first will need external power, while modern ones won't need it.

If your TV is capable of powering via HDMI it doesn't require a power adapter. You can't really blame them for that if the TV is out of date.

Just like, pretty much every, android device it uses a USB charger. Many advertisement related images don't include cords and the like for prettier pictures. Using HDMI to power things is a tricky thing, many monitors and TVs din't supply power over HDMI and among those that do (especially Sony TV iirc) they provide less-than ideal amounts of power.

A lot of new HDTV's however have HDMI and a USB port (generally near each other).

It would be a bit messy but perhaps you could have it plugged into both at once and then you won't need an ungainly power cable to a socket.

On recent HD TVs that's true, but if you go back more than 2-3 years (or didn't buy a giant 55" set) then it's quite likely you'll have to resort to the AC adapter.

Which is exactly what they've accounted for here, and why they've given both options.

The question is - do you have to resort to the AC adapter if you have one of the newer HDMI ports?

The fine text on the linked page says "Power cord required" (emphasis mine).

It uses a USB cable that is indeed not shown in the marketing images, but it is mentioned in the product description.

I think it can be connected like this with the TV's USB port:


Yep, or a regular USB power adapter which I think someone mentioned is included.

Does anyone know if this is actually powered solely by HDMI:


It is, but only works on a TV that supports MHL HDMI. The chromecast stick works on any HDMI port because it doesn't rely on the port for power.

it's too bad it can't use MHL power where available and fall back to external. Seems like an obvious feature.

It is but it's MHL

Lots of Smart TVs also have USB -- how much power does this draw? Could it not have a USB power-slurper that you could plug into the USB port of the TV fr power?

Yes, you can do precisely that. As posted above, the setup instructions show options for either connecting to a TV's USB port or using a USB wall charger: http://cdn2.sbnation.com/entry_photo_images/8651957/2013-07-...

The Samsung TVs can supply something stupid like 300ma. Enough for a USB stick, but not a spinning disk that is host powered.

It does.

sucks. Just bought 3 units. Didn't see it requires a power cord

Does it honestly change anything? It's not like your TV doesn't require a power cord...

Did you spot any cable during the presentation from the dongle to the wall or a power strip?

Worth noting- the $35 Chromecast dongle comes with three months of free Netflix membership (including for existing users), which makes the thing very cheap indeed.

Just ordered mine. With the three months of Netflix included, my cost is only $11. Ridiculous.

More like $17 after taxes and the cheapest shipping, but still cheap enough for me to impulse buy.

Amazon how has them in stock. I have prime, but I assume it's free super saver shipping for > $25, and no taxes (collected) in many places.

Well that was close.... I also have prime so I figured I might get my chromecast quicker if I cancelled my order from google store which I made 4 hours earlier (I went with cheapest shipping).

Click through the confirm prompts to cancel my order from google. Click to buy from amazon, expected delivery date: 22nd of August.


Flick back to the google store tab and find that it has declared that I couldn't cancel my order. Phew.

Successfully cancel my order from amazon.


So, Amazon actually said when Chromecast might ship by? When I was about to order it, it didn't give any indication of when it might arrive, it just said "we'll email you when we get an idea."

The Google play store guaranteed shipment by August 7, though, so if Amazon really expects it to arrive by late August, I'll just go with the play store.

Wow, that was quite the steep function. My guaranteed date was 26 July and it shipped a couple hours after I placed the order.

Oh, wow. They told me July 30. Glad I submitted my order early - didn't realize it was gonna be a line.

Any idea if the thing can run via a proxy? Could be a fairly clean way of using Netflix from Australia.

It streams from one of your devices, not directly from netflix. If your device can proxy, it can

It would seem the opposite, it does not even need the device to be on while it's streaming from what I've read.

If you get multiple Chromecasts do you keep getting bundles of three more free months?

Bottom of [1]:

"...you will recieve an email with a promotional code for 3 months of Netflix. Offer valid for previous, new and existing Netflix members, one per Netflix account."

I would suspect not.

[1] https://play.google.com/store/devices/details?id=chromecast

I'm guessing they'll link it to your Google (Play) account.

"Sorry! Devices on Google Play is not available in your country yet. We're working to bring devices to more countries as quickly as possible. Please check back again soon."

Ugh. Yeah. https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/9811856/Sorry%21%2C%20No...

Annoying thing is that loads of companies have a large European presence here (Ireland: low corporate taxes, educated English speaking workforce, EU country, plenty of rain(uh wait, that's not a reason)) but then fail to offer their products!

Amazon (originally wouldn't ship Kindle Fires), Google (no Nexuses (Nexi?)) through Play Store. To name but two companies. With a hack (vpn) you can get Google.co.uk to ship Nexi to Ireland but they go via the UK and apparently they start off being shipped from Dublin[1], not good for the ol' planet!

Really good write-up [1] http://richardbloomfield.ie/2013/02/google-nexus-4/

I don't even get the we're working part. Just the not available part. Being in India sucks.

And while the UK does have a devices page on the Play store with Nexus devices and Chromebooks, no Chromecast here either.

Is this available anywhere but the US? Standard Google...

They say it was to be released "in coming weeks" (whatever that means) in UK, Canada, France, Germany, Spain, Japan and Korea.

I'm a little confused by this device, and I haven't been able to find the info from Google.

Is it that this device acts like an AirPlay receiver of sorts and accepts a video feed from an approved device or is it that the device simply acts as a remote and the device gets its own stream from Internet sources? The latter is much more intriguing than the former, although both have issues for sure, but hard to complain for the price.

It's an interesting concept either way. I don't see it as a huge threat to the Apple TV or Roku, as both do a lot more and have dedicated controllers. Using an Apple TV with an iPhone is nice in some respects, but the wifi connectivity isn't great. A Bluetooth pairing would be exponentially better. It doesn't appear this device uses Bluetooth either.

As I see it, I could envision having an Apple TV or Roku for a main TV and something like this for another TV or for a computer monitor than can support this.

It's the latter, although it also supports local receiver mode, so for example, you can cast your browser tab to the display.

And I'll be able to stream whatever is in that one browser tab to my TV without restrictions?

Yes. But its in 'Beta'

Just curious, what don't you like about the Remote app for Apple TV? I purchased an Apple TV over a Roku just because of how slick the Remote app was, personally, along with the good-but-not-great* airplay functionality you get with an iPad. I haven't had any issues with the wi-fi at all.

*: It seemed at first to be superb but then I found out that the AppleTV will refuse to play some (most?) content due to DRM restrictions. It's not clear if that's a problem with my HDMI cable or with AirPlay itself - I think AirPlay is simulating an HDMI connection via WiFi.

I should clarify that I mostly use the Remote app and largely find it works well, particularly for searching.

I find the wifi connection between my iPhone and my Apple TV (via an Airport Extreme) is a bit laggy and sometimes drops. I think it would be a much smoother experience if it paired via Bluetooth 4.0. I'm hoping the next Apple TV includes Bluetooth.

The Remote app is much more usable than the Apple TV remote, but the remote has a lot less lag and is easier to move around the interface with. This hasn't stopped me from using my Apple TV several days a week with just the Remote app, but I think that a Bluetooth connection would be much better.

The current AppleTV has bluetooth -- you can use it for pairing of a keyboard. The issue is that AirPlay doesn't support bluetooth as a transmission method in its current implementation.

Ah, yes you're right. I'd like to be able to Bluetooth pair my iPhone or iPad to my Apple TV for remote purposes. The keyboard is nice, but overkill.

Yeah. I'd like that functionality too, although I'm not sure how great the range would be.

To answer indirectly, I have Rokus I use for Netflix. I've always wanted freedom to roam Youtube as freely. That would be enough to make me choose this (if my Roku 3 was not a recent purchase).

Has Google been holding full Youtube navigation as a content card against the other dedicated players? (as opposed to media pcs) Is this where they spend it?

it essentially acts as a remote, your controlling device instructs the chromecast where to stream from, it doesn't actually pull a stream from the controlling device. They said that the device you start streaming from can go to sleep (or, i'm assuming, turn off entirely) and the stream will keep playing.

I'm curious to see what kind of Chromecast support they build into Google Hangouts.

Right now we have meetings on-site and usually have one person in the meeting running a Hangout on a laptop to communicate with the remote folks. Being able to have a "portal" to all the remote attendees would be awesome.

If it works as advertised, this could be disruptive. They made it dead simple to stream content from any device to your TV. So anyone can use it, particularly the older generation.

Potential for number of apps that could be developed is endless. Apparently, Washington Post is building an app on top of it (http://t.co/dTWesNOoIC). So possibilities are endless. And good news - another step towards making cable TV irrelevant.

P.S. I just bought one. Can't wait to play with it's SDK.

> They made it dead simple to stream content from any device to your TV. So anyone can use it, particularly the older generation.

That's not really new. Apple TV lets you do the same thing with AirPlay, and it works great.

Seems like a decent device, and the fact that it works with non-Apple hardware is obviously useful for people who don't have Apple households, but I don't think it's disruptive.

> Apple TV lets you do the same thing with AirPlay, and it works great.

Not entirely. AirPlay is baked into the OS, so devs don't need to do extra work to support it. Chromecast (or, the Google Cast SDK) is built into the app level, and works in a fundamentally different way (i.e. streams from the internet and allows multi-user queueing vs. streams from the audio/video output of the device).

I don't think it's terribly disruptive - it's essentially AirPlay 2.0 - but it is new.

"Streams from the internet" isn't inherently superior. There are things about it that are nice and things about it that are not so nice.

1. it requires the dongle to have equivalent internet access as the 'controlling' device. So it would seem you'd be out of luck if you wanted to stream from a mobile device using a cell modem, to a chromecast on a display in, say, a hotel, conference room or cabin without (unfiltered) wifi access to the internet.

2. sometimes internet-streamed video, even when possible, is far inferior to just soaking some processing power from the mobile device. People who locally-save video content for performance/quality reasons aren't going to be wild about it happily ignoring that local store to pull down a choppy/compressed stream.

3. it seems to limit the stream to codecs the device supports. So one can't likely chromecast from an HTPC that's otherwise perfectly capable of streaming xvid/divx/etc.

multi-user queue-ing is nice. Airplay really should pick that up.

But I'm not at all wild about "it's own internet stream". While the pros are neat in certain situations, the cons are a deal-breaker for me.

AirPlay also lets you use the Apple TV as a second window for iOS apps. Basically, you can just create a new UIWindow and assign it to the Apple TV and then it won't mirror your app, it will just display whatever view you have on the screen. It does have some lag time though so its hard to do real time graphics on the Apple TV.

What makes it AirPlay 2.0?

the fact that it works with non-Apple hardware is obviously useful for people who don't have Apple households

It seems it will work with both Android and iOS apps and with anything that runs the Chrome browser. That is quite a big improvement over the walled garden of Apple TV.

I'm confused about how it works with iOS apps. Does it just act like an AirPlay device? From Safari on iOS, Spotify, etc. there's the AirPlay icon that I can push to switch it to the Apple TV. Or would the apps have to add a different type of button? I didn't realize until now that Chrome is available for iOS. Would you have to switch to that for streaming web videos?

Apps which want to support this would add a 'stream to chromecast' button which would use the Chromecast android/iOS API. (https://developers.google.com/cast/)

It seems to not be possible to stream the web browser from a mobile for now - all the mobile apps in the demo (netflix, google video, youtube) triggered a video download straight to the dongle from the internet, with the mobile effectively being used just as a remote. That's the primary use case. The 'stream a web page a browserdirectly from your computer' bit is still in beta and, AFAICS, currently only works with chrome on Windows/MacOS/chromeOS.

But it's possible it'll be added in future to chrome for iOS/android, and if it is: yes, you'll need to use chrome, the chances of Apple supporting chromecast in safari are... slim.

> Apple TV lets you do the same thing with AirPlay, and it works great.

With Apple-devices only. The majority of the market has non-Apple devices. And that's across a range of product-classes: Desktops, Laptops and mobile devices.

To be able to take advantage of AirPlay you need to be all in all across all those classes. That brings the effective market-share which can use AirPlay (in developed countries) down from around 20% to much less than 5%. In less developed countries, AirPlay is dead code.

This will be a device people can actually use. Do you seriously not consider that a factor in being disruptive?

> This will be a device people can actually use.

Assuming they use Chrome or Android, that is...

> Assuming they use Chrome or Android

Ok. Point. Currently (and maybe for the foreseeable future?) there will be some limitations and requirements.

But Chrome can be installed anywhere, for free. You don't have to throw out everything you own and buy new equipment, like Apple requires you to.

If it's a $0 vs $1000 question, I know which one will win.

Forgive my well, actually.... but:

Well, actually, iOS and OSX devices are supported too.

If Microsoft developed the first tablets but Apple perfected it into a disruptive device, couldn't the same hold true for an Airplay to Chromecast corollary?

The NEW disruptive aspects of the new device are the price point, the collaborative playlist aggregation, and the open ecosystem. Airplay was the first to the table in ease of push technology but existing in its own vertical market prevented it from a more widespread adoption.

We'll be looking back on the Chromecast as the device that helped redefine how we addressed the media center form factor.

While there will be exceptions as a rule I'd suggest the older generation have no interest in having to use a phone, tablet or laptop to control their TV.

You should see the baby-boomers I know show off to their neighbors when they watch xfinity, streamed from their laptops to their TVs, via hdmi.

Being 60 doesn't mean you don't get excited about technology anymore. But it does mean that you have more time to play with it ;)

And my Dad's friends take great pride in the deliberately simple feature phones with as few features as possible.

Smart phone ownership for 60+s is about half what it is for 18 - 36 year olds and I'd wager that engagement levels are proportionately lower too.

I'm not saying no older users will go for this but I think the core users will be younger and will be far, far more likely to be under the 18 - 35 bracket than over (that group being willing to tinker and price sensitive therefore more likely to use Android phones and see the appeal of a $35 device).

Why not? You can't use a TV these days without a remote of some kind, and I believe a software interface on a general purpose device will actually be easier than a remote.

Whats the privacy policy? Do I need a Google / Youtube account to use it? Just what data is shared with Google? E.g. Will all my viewing habits be stored? Will Google ads on my browser suddenly target me based upon my TV use?

It's $35, but it only offers the Airplay receiver functionality of the Apple TV (I don't think it will do display mirroring of computers and Android devices though).

From what I've read (please correct me if I'm wrong), the Chromecast doesn't function as a standalone device. In other words, you need a smartphone/tablet/computer to play things on it. It doesn't have its own interface where you can browse and play content like the Apple TV does.

Yeah, I bought one.

The fundamental problem I'm trying to solve with this device is streaming youtube to my parents TV. I want something low-tech that they can invoke from their Computer/Android/iOS device and I don't want them to learn a new menu.

The pricepoint is what sold me. AppleTV is too expensive for what it does, and while the power plug is annoying, it's easier than their current solution, which involves leveraging an old PS3 for Netflix playback.

So yeah, this is not a straight up replacement for AppleTV, but it solves the subset of problems I'm looking for.

That's my $.02.

What you might be looking for, is nowadays positioned as a "smart TV converter box" $60-100. Basically a Android box that has a hdmi/av out, connects to wifi and comes with a remote. I set this up for my parents so they can launch skype on their old TV a couple remote clicks. But turned out they can install apps from google play so they get youtube, news and email too.

Any word on if I can stream whatever is on my Android screen to this?

There are many times where I have pics on my phone (either via the phone's camera, or Picasa, G+, etc) that I want to show people at home - but there's no easy way to show them without having to pass around a tiny screen.

When you click the chrome logo on this page: http://www.google.com/intl/en/chrome/devices/chromecast/#chr... you can see G+ pics being displayed on the TV so I guess you could use it to show pics

Will this bypass the need for a Hulu Plus subscription for TV watching? Hulu plus allows you to watch Hulu on a big screen device in addition to tablets.

Hulu will likely invest in trying to figure out if you're streaming the tab to be able to block it, its their way.

Screen-casting from the desktop version of Google Chrome is a (beta) browser extension. From 2 mins of Googling (I'm no expert), it looks like you can detect those trivially.

You can spoof Chrome to be another browser and AFAIK extensions installed is not broadcast to third parties.

I really want to know this as well. I pay for Hulu Plus, but the ads are almost as bad as they are on regular television (that's right, you get ads even when you pay for content).

I read a few articles and they say it does work with Hulu out of the box. From what I understand it will broadcast anything in your chrome tab.

Using a phone app will probably require Hulu Plus. If you open up Hulu in chrome and cast it with the chrome extension, it might work until Hulu figures out a way to detect it.

Chromecast is not available in your country.

I live in Canada. Apple seems to be able to make this stuff work, why can't anyone else?

I know how you feel. Considering this thing will be sold at BestBuy, and we have BestBuy in Canada, why can't we get this thing day one?

It is sold out even for US customers on the Play store at this point. Bad week for me to be picked for jury duty, would have probably caught this in time otherwise.

Does anyone know if you can stream non-online videos? Like if I have a video file on my computer and want to play it on my TV, does Chromecast allow for this?

I guess you could always whip up an html5 page to play local videos

Nice, since the Play store says "We are out of inventory. Check back soon." https://play.google.com/store/devices/details?id=chromecast&... I'm confused about it being USB-powered. Does it need to be plugged to both HDMI and USB at the same time?

Edit: The Buy button forwards to the Play store, where it's "out of inventory". They could change the wording to "Sold Out!" and then brag about that.

I noticed that the end opposite of the HDMI seemed to have a micro USB in port on it. I suspect that it is powered via that, however none of the demonstrations showed it being plugged in, so I believe it may have an internal battery which needs recharging.

Edit: The specs at the bottom of the page don't list a battery but it does list an included power adapter, so I guess you have to have that plugged in at all times.

Edit 2: Certain versions[1] of the HDMI spec provide power. It's possible that the USB is a backup solution for older spec'd TVs.

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mobile_High-Definition_Link#Fea...

You sure it's not just for firmware updates? The GameStick (http://gamestick.tv) is powered purely via HDMI.

The Gamestick is powered by MHL if you have it, but you have to power it through its micro-usb port if you have normal HDMI (source: have one). I expect it's the same for the Chromecast.

In the "What's in the box" they list a "USB power cable" and "power adapter".

Yeah, the video in the carousel has a brief fine print message that says the "power adapter is required (not shown). "

Opening it on my phone said "We are out of inventory. Check back soon.". Opening on PC said "Coming soon" and a refresh of the page let me buy it. Hope that helps.

Now it's saying "coming soon".

Just purchased, thanks. :)

What's with all the Amazon reviews already? They should have locked reviews for a few days to prevent trolls.

Thanks! With Prime I get it 5 days sooner for less money via Amazon.

And free shipping too! Google is charging for shipping.

This is useful for educational purposes, too - wirelessly streaming from a chrome browser or chromebook to a projector (via hdmi to vga adapter).

(An alternative if you have a laptop connected to the projector is to run AirServer to act as a virtual Apple TV, and then either airplay from your ipad or run AirParrot from a windows tablet. Of course Chromecast will be the first solution to work from android tablets, too, since Miracast solutions still seem to be non-existent or not so great.)

I'm actually desperately searching for confirmation on whether this devices DOES support Miracast (and screen sharing). My guy is saying "no", since it isn't advertised anywhere. I think this device might only be receiving URIs and control commands from other devices.

I'm confused. Can it grab and process the stream itself? So, if I pull up netflix on my phone, start a video, then force close netflix, will it still be playing?

Playback is cloud-to-device, not device-to-device.

Yes, from what I gather you should be able to even power off your phone, and the stream is still going. The device itself is running chrome, and opening up netflix itself. Your phone or whatever device you use to talk to it, is more of a peripheral used to control the chromecast device.

Basically your phone is not only practically, but technically, just a remote.

The Chrome and Android teams don't seem to be great bedfellows, it seems - it isn't clear to me what demarcates Chrome-branded products from products running Android in areas far from their original targets.

They two teams were recently merged, or at least now share the same leader, Sundar Pichai.

Chrome is likely the right name here, it supports most platforms where Chrome runs, not just Android.

Although it leaves the Google TV team in an awkward position

The GoogleTV g+, twitter etc. feeds, previously pretty active, have been dead since January. My guess is the bulk of the GoogleTV engineering talent left it to make chromecast.

Well, just purchased mine. I was a little peeved that my nexus 7 didn't have HDMI-out, but this device looks perfect.

Makes much more sense as a product than last year's Nexus Q.

This doesn't seem much different from the MediaLink HD that HTC has had for over a year now. Although that ran Android and this runs Chrome. Both were capable of talking to NetFlix and other content URLs directly once they got the WiFi information from your device. This helps devices save battery since they don't have to download the data just to resend it, and don't have to transcode anything.

That said the MediaLink HD often had lag issues that kept it more in the realm of presentations and media and made it difficult for real time games. Even for presentations I'd often carry my own WiFi AP around with me or find ways to get it just to connect between the phone and device to avoid them. Home performance is probably better than conference and event performance.

I recently tried a Netgear Miracast adapter to send HDMI from an HTC One and the lag is completely gone. I haven't tried Google's implementation of Chromecast yet, but I'm suspicious it won't be nearly as lag and trouble free as a WiFi Direct only device like the Netgear, though. You have a whole extra OS running device in the chain to make things a pain. So I'm suspicious the extra complexity isn't worth it for this class of devices.

Okay maybe this is really obvious, but how do I tell a device with no input which wifi network to connect to and what the password for it is?

From the setup page (https://cast.google.com/chromecast/setup), it appears that it generates its own access point that you connect to.

This is how WiFi-enabled printers and bathroom scales work, too.

Does it mean that I have to disconnect from my home wifi and loose ability to google stuff during this process?

The power chord is a USB cable. My guess was that you set it up on your computer via USB.

google.com/chromecast/setup gives you a link to download a native computer app. Looks like it does some wifi search from the native app to "pair" and setup the device.

This is cool....the only thing that is a bit annoying is the fact that the audio won't be 5.1, it will likely be stereo.

I mean, for YouTube videos it doesn't matter.

But if you are streaming a movie or something, then that may be an annoyance.

But that could just be me.

This is assuming that you have a digital audio source plugged directly into your receiver ofcourse, as opposed to your TV.

Hmm, interesting point... I would be plugging this thing directly into a giant Pioneer receiver--never the TV monitor--and certainly HDMI is not itself an impediment to 5.1 audio, but details on supported digital audio formats seem a bit scarce now.

Based on all the images (and limited copy) here, it seems that it may need you to plug it directly into the TV and not a receiver.

I could be mistaken, but the video, images and copy all seem to go to the TV.

Does the docs say that the audio is only stereo? Is that a product limitation or an HDMI limitation?

Nope. I don't see anything about the audio at all.

I just know that for my setup, whenever I plug anything into my HDMI port on my TV, I get stereo audio.

It could be that my TV doesn't handle the audio decoding properly, but I imagine that it isn't exclusive to my Toshiba.

HDMI supports 7.1 surround. I'm not sure what kind of setup you have where you get sound from your TV to your sound system, but you can buy an HDMI splitter for something like $10 that will give you an optical audio signal and a video-only HDMI signal.

It'd be epic if this supported ALL the "AirPlay" type tech...PlayTo, AirPlay, whatever "throw my video up there" formats exist.

I like the price and ordered one, but if it only supports Google's format, that'll be a bummer. I want this for AirPlay.

This device is really appealing, but I am extremely disappointed that it can only mirror chrome tabs. I'd be much more interested in this device if they would throw out some native applications to mirror a whole screen like Apple's Airplay can.

You're asking for far more control than what Google has access to, at least on mobile devices. Apple can do it for iOS because they make it.

I specifically mean desktop. I'd be surprised to learn that VNC clients and such can manage it but something like this wouldn't, but I've been known to be wrong before.

I dont understand how you stream content from your device to the Chromecast. My PC has Windows Media Player, my Windows 8 phone has XBox SmartGlass. Would these applications allow you to stream to the tv. I am abit lost...

No. There are 4 applications that know what a Chromecast is and can send video to it: Netflix for Android, YouTube for Android, Google Play for Android, and Chrome for Android/Windows/Mac/ChromeOS.

* ed: and ChromeOS.

Correction: Netflix for Android/iOS, YouTube for Android/iOS, Google Play for Android, and Chrome browser for Android/Windows/Mac/iOS/ChromeOS.

iOS support is a major factor here.

> There are 4 applications that know what a Chromecast is and can send video to it: Netflix for Android, YouTube for Android, Google Play for Android, and Chrome for Android/Windows/Mac.

Clearly, ChromeOS does too, since it works on the Chromebook Pixel.

Well, there are 4 now. But there's a public API (more precisely, 3 public APIs), so more'll start popping up soon enough.


I wonder how best to use this with a local Plex Media Server. I only really have one projector/ht directly attached to the media server right now, but in a future where I have N TVs throughout the house, it would be nice to have a $35 device on each to stream content. AppleTV support is pretty weak for PMS.

I'd really prefer wired gig-e, though. 802.11n is borderline for a busy network with several video streams. At that point I'd end up running a bunch of separate wifi APs, which raises the cost to where real wired devices start to be cheaper again.

It's powerful, it's cheap ($35 vs $99 for Apple TV) in no time, this device will be on every other tv. Just imagine all that data...this is definitely a game changer. This is awesome.

Here's an article on the Difference Between Chromecast and Google TV (an Interview with Google's SVP of Android, Chome, and Apps: Sundar Pichai) http://allthingsd.com/20130724/sundar-pichai-on-the-differen...

They should make a cheaper audio only version for the speakers in your bedroom, etc. Kind of like the airport express. Maybe one with just a stereo jack and one with the same ports as the apple TV.

It doesn't even have to be cheaper, just have audio out.

S/PDIF for 5.1 surround!

Do people use 5.1 or 7.1 outside of TVs & home theaters much at all?

People buy ChromeCast just for TVs & home theaters.

I was talking about my audio only version. ChromeCast is made for TVs

The device has a microUSB port. The microUSB powers the device. The device plugs into the HDMI port. The device requires a microUSB powered cable to operate while plugged in through HDMI.

HDMI doesn't provide power, so that makes sense -- unfortunate as it is.

Chromecast chrome extension works on PS3 YouTube App.

I just tried today and noticed, with the Chromecast extension for Chrome (https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/google-cast/boadge...) installed.

I am now able to push YouTube videos from my laptop to my PS3 (YouTube App). This makes searching videos just so much more easier.

So it seems not to be an actualy HDMI reciever that just outputs your devices screen on the TV so that you can do anything with it like playing back moviews, playing games on the big screen etc ? Thats that, i had hoped it was basically a Miracast reciever..HTC has a similar device called the Media Link HD which does this, its $90 though but seems to be the way to go for me as i dont want to be limitied by whats possible in chrome.

Awesome that its so affordable. HTC has a similar device called Media Link HD which costs around $90 and i considered buying it. Chromecast all the way :)

Just bought two - one for each TV in my house. I already have tons of media-streamer devices (TLBB XBMC, Pivos DS, Roku, etc) but they should be nifty.

Looks like if you refresh enough it will allow you to purchase - Just ordered one. Took a lot less time than the Nexus 4 ordering process ;-)

Did they stop offering the three free months of netflix? I don't see it mentioned anywhere on the page or amazon listing anymore.

This is a $35 AppleTV. Well played google.

So it's like an apple tv where you can push streams from your iOS or andriod device (e.g. youtube) but what about browser/app integration?

I would love to be able to create a "widget" that sits on my tv and has internet. I could think of a ton of things. Like snapchat but for videos .. just saying :)

Will I be able to use free Hulu on Chrome through it? If so, this could make subscribing to Hulu Plus unneeded.

Not available in the UK, but given the specs I'm unsure what should prevent it working as is in the UK?

I'll buy this once there is wide adoption. I would like either a Bluray player or VLC to support this.

Some compared this to AppleTV, but I would love to point out sellers of overpriced hdmi cables ($20-60, gold plated bla-bla-bla together with new TV). Also, Samsung sells wifi dobgles for their SmartTVs for $60-80 in my country. Hopefully that business will get more reasonable...

At the same price as a Raspberry Pi, why would I want one?

For me, the only benefit I see to the Chromecast is frequent travel for use on hotel televisions. Otherwise, an HTPC is going to provide superior functionality at the same cost.

Well, I have a HTPC, and a PS3, and I still got this. Why? Because it's super cheap, and does a few things better than the other devices - Youtube and Netflix etc don't work on XBMC well at all, youtube on the PS3 is a pain since you have to wait for it to open the app, and being able to use this for play music will be great. For $17 (with the netflix months and shipping), it's well worth it.

It's great for a run and go gadget, but I don't think it'll replace my HTPC.

If I didn't already have dedicated hardware, I'd get one. As it is, there isn't anything it does that makes it worth including in an existing HTPC setup.

Really? How do you do Youtube/Netflix on your HTPC now? How about play music? If you are browsing youtube on your laptop and want to play it on your tv, how many seconds is that going to take to transfer the video playback?

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