Google announces Chromecast, streams Chrome to your TV

After the embarrassing failure of the Nexus Q, Google has introduced another bid to enter the living room with Chromecast, a 2 inch dongle connected by HDMI to any TV. After connecting the device to wi-fi, users just need to open an app such as YouTube from their phone or tablet, and have it stream directly to the TV. The phone acts as a remote, controlling volume and other settings. All streaming also happens in the background, allowing the owner of the mobile device to continue browsing separately, or even put the device to sleep.

In addition to streaming from YouTube, other apps can make use of Chromecast. For example, Netflix, who has already made use of the allegedly simple Google Cast SDK. The feature works with both iOS and Android,and if using Chrome on Windows, Mac or a Chromebook, full webpages can be mirrored.

Google has emphasized how Chromecast streams video from the cloud directly, so your phone or tablet will use minimal battery life, as it isn't continually in use. Additionally, Chromecast isn't tied to any specific device, meaning that if someone leaves the house with one phone, you can pick up control with another, which will detect the local TV. Devices also remain in sync, so if one person scrubs through a video on their Nexus 4, it will instantly show the change on someone else's iPhone.

Chromecast is available on Google Play for $35 today in the US with 3 free months of Netflix; availability in other countries will follow in coming weeks.

Image: Google

Report a problem with article
Previous Story

Google Announces Nexus 7 refresh, Android 4.3

Next Story

Microsoft partners with Azul Systems to bring OpenJDK to Windows Azure

71 Comments

Commenting is disabled on this article.

Don't most TVs have this stuff built in now? Mine plays Netflix, Youtube, Amazon, Hulu Plus, etc, thought it was pretty standard at this point.

Thrackerzod said,
Don't most TVs have this stuff built in now? Mine plays Netflix, Youtube, Amazon, Hulu Plus, etc, thought it was pretty standard at this point.
No, only the top-of-the-line (more expensive) models have those features.

I bought two of these myself yesterday. Lots of my friends bought one. At $35 plus 3 months free Netflix for new and existing customers, it was a no brainier.

I will buy two more as stocking stuffer gifts for my brother and girlfriend for this holiday season.

This device is a serious threat to the AppleTV and mostly to Microsoft and its XBOX One.

Microsoft still hasn't understood that its ecosystem needs an affordable media endpoint.
And it's getting awfully late...

TheCyberKnight said,
This device is a serious threat to the AppleTV and mostly to Microsoft and its XBOX One.

Microsoft still hasn't understood that its ecosystem needs an affordable media endpoint.
And it's getting awfully late...

Serious threat to the Apple TV? Yeah, $35 is a more attractive price than $99 when you're doing mostly the same thing. Chromestream is only a serious threat to the XBox One if people are only buying it to stream stuff from their phone. Plus, Chromestream doesn't have Halo 5.

You should not underestimate the price factor. All Google needs is to bring the consumer into their ecosystem, whatever the reason.

Android did not originally succeed because of its feature set or user experience. They were simply horrible. The price factor was decisive and brought many phone maker into the ecosystem. And voilà...the rest is history.

TheCyberKnight said,
This device is a serious threat to the AppleTV and mostly to Microsoft and its XBOX One.

Microsoft still hasn't understood that its ecosystem needs an affordable media endpoint.
And it's getting awfully late...

ha ha ha

You fail to get that the Nexus Q was never released to the public. This is.

Seriously dude, if you dont have anything constructive to say...then dont say it.

techbeck said,
You fail to get that the Nexus Q was never released to the public.

Ok? Still, the device failed. I'm not sure how a dongle is going to fare any better than this, especially considering how it messes with your home's wireless network.

Dot Matrix said,

Ok? Still, the device failed. I'm not sure how a dongle is going to fare any better than this, especially considering how it messes with your home's wireless network.

How can a device that didnt even make it to the masses fail. It was a concept product. If you want to go by device that didnt make it to market, then look at all the failed MS products over the years then.

$35 for Chromecast and it being opened to devs...it has the potential to do a lot of things. And you would see that if you were not so anti everything but MS. Just another one of many things on a wireless network...it can handle it...it will be fine as long as Google supports/markets it well.

techbeck said,

How can a device that didnt even make it to the masses fail.

"Nexus Q was named one of the Top 10 "fails" of 2012 by CNN in December 2012."

Ask CNN, or ZDnet.

you mean constructive when all you guys post in anything MS threads...

just another useless google product you brainwashed folk will buy into. All google are interested in is getting their ads to as many devices as humanly possible.

Dot Matrix said,

"Nexus Q was named one of the Top 10 "fails" of 2012 by CNN in December 2012."

Ask CNN, or ZDnet.

So CNN or ZDnet come out with a list and that makes it so. I guess all the analyst and predictions recently on Windows products are true as well. Good to know.

BTW, the failure list is their opinions....these list come out all the time. It doesnt voice the industry as a whole.

Edited by techbeck, Jul 25 2013, 12:20pm :

korupt_one said,
you mean constructive when all you guys post in anything MS threads...

I post a lot of positive things in MS threads. I may not agree with what everyone says and have my own thoughts and opinions...but I dont post things like another failed product. There is a big difference.

Dot Matrix said,

Ok? Still, the device failed. I'm not sure how a dongle is going to fare any better than this, especially considering how it messes with your home's wireless network.

Please explain for us how exactly is "messes" with your wireless network.
I'm genuinely interested in your contorted perspective on this...

evo_spook said,
Just so everyones aware, you still need to plug this into a power socket, it is not powered by the HDMI slot.

There is a high probability that if your TV is recent, it has a HDMI and a USB slot.

This is a great idea, and is at a very great price. I'm just hoping they don't just restrict to cloud content and allow devs to push local content to it. I use Plex, and I could see it being used the same way (except Plex would push from my Plex Server, as opposed to the cloud).

would be nice if Microsoft could come up w/ a similar device for smart glass as an alternative to paying $500 for an xbox one....especially if you're a multiple tv household and just want the entertainment features.

techbeck said,

You order from Play, or someplace else?

Yep, from Play. Wish I could have payed with Paypal though. I don't really care to have my credit card info saved in Wallet. But I'll probably just delete it out of there when the order gets charged.

Not that it matters for you guys since you ordered one, but you can also order from Best Buy or Amazon (and still get 3 months of Netflix free).

It's cheap, I ordered one too from Google Play.

tsupersonic said,
Not that it matters for you guys since you ordered one, but you can also order from Best Buy or Amazon (and still get 3 months of Netflix free).

It's cheap, I ordered one too from Google Play.

Yea, was not available on Amazon/BB yet so I ordered from Play.

techbeck said,
Ordered my from Play a little while ago. Apparently shipping doesnt happen until August 2nd.

I ordered two one from Play the other from Amazon. Both shipped this morning.

DarkNet said,

I ordered two one from Play the other from Amazon. Both shipped this morning.

I called Google and they are back ordered. Amazon is sold out. So I ordered from Best Buy and should arrive tomorrow or latest, Monday. Going to refuse the package from Google and get a refund.

techbeck said,
Going to refuse the package from Google and get a refund.

Just a friendly advice. Go to your Google Play Order page and delete the order. You are allowed to do that with items that haven't been charged to your card which means it hasn't been shipped.

Don't have to worry about refunds and refusing delivery.

I originally ordered it through Play, then I found out that Amazon had it. Since I am a Prime Member, it was a no brainer to go through Amazon. Most people are unaware of cancelling an unshipped order.

I wanted to make sure I can get it from Amazon right away before canceling the Play order since I did it within minutes of availability. In the end I am getting one Friday or Monday and the other sometime next week since I ordered the second one after canceling the Play Store order in the Evening.

DarkNet said,

Just a friendly advice. Go to your Google Play Order page and delete the order. You are allowed to do that with items that haven't been charged to your card which means it hasn't been shipped.

Cant, Tried that. Google Support cannot do that either. No big deal as I will refuse the package. Tho, I may not order something from Play again if thats how it is.

DarkNet said,

Just a friendly advice. Go to your Google Play Order page and delete the order. You are allowed to do that with items that haven't been charged to your card which means it hasn't been shipped.

Don't have to worry about refunds and refusing delivery.

I originally ordered it through Play, then I found out that Amazon had it. Since I am a Prime Member, it was a no brainer to go through Amazon. Most people are unaware of cancelling an unshipped order.

I wanted to make sure I can get it from Amazon right away before canceling the Play order since I did it within minutes of availability. In the end I am getting one Friday or Monday and the other sometime next week since I ordered the second one after canceling the Play Store order in the Evening.

I tried to cancel my Play order but it wouldn't let me. I am also a Prime member, so I was hoping to get it sooner and pay less, but nope!

techbeck said,

Cant, Tried that. Google Support cannot do that either. No big deal as I will refuse the package. Tho, I may not order something from Play again if thats how it is.

Well I doubt that you'll never order anything again. The geek will get the best of you. That's why we both jumped the gun in the first place. LOL

But yeah, it's no big deal.

techbeck said,

Cant, Tried that. Google Support cannot do that either. No big deal as I will refuse the package. Tho, I may not order something from Play again if thats how it is.

Yep, still can't cancel mine either. It's a little sad they're trapping people in by disallowing cancellations. But as long as the thing works well, I'll be happy.

Astra.Xtreme said,

Yep, still can't cancel mine either. It's a little sad they're trapping people in by disallowing cancellations. But as long as the thing works well, I'll be happy.


Funny Support cancelled my order. I guess I did it before the wave of people getting it through Amazon. But no worries, you can accept it and return it within 15 days.

DarkNet said,

Funny Support cancelled my order. I guess I did it before the wave of people getting it through Amazon. But no worries, you can accept it and return it within 15 days.

Support told me that if you order via Play and accept the package, you have 5 days to return it. Or you talking about Amazon?

Someone needs to hack this and make a linux distribution for it. Would be a seriously cheap pc. Wonder if that usb port can support a usb hub.

I was thinking something like that, maybe some kind of super light distribution, so you can drop XBMC.

Don't really care about the youtube (Google music would be cool in my TV though), netflix streaming; my PS3/Apple TV2, even some of those dumb smart TVs, can do that.

I will buy one, as soon is available in my country.

PCAVV said,
Seems cool, too bad you need a Google Account to use it.... I'm out just because of it...

I've been purposely saying stupid comments all day today and then you write this. You win, I'm done.

Why? I don't have a Google account either, and have ZERO interest in creating one just to stream Chrome to my TV which I also DONT use. I can just use WiDi or my 360 to do the same thing.

SteveyAyo said,
Why? I don't have a Google account either, and have ZERO interest in creating one just to stream Chrome to my TV which I also DONT use. I can just use WiDi or my 360 to do the same thing.

Probably be lots more you can do with it one devs get a hold of it.

But what does it bring to the table that my 360/One wont do? And how will it work for me as someone who deleted Chrome off his computer over a year ago?

SteveyAyo said,
Why? I don't have a Google account either, and have ZERO interest in creating one just to stream Chrome to my TV which I also DONT use. I can just use WiDi or my 360 to do the same thing.

Then what's the point in even commenting?

My point is how much I would the Google to change as a company and the policies that they have. Sometimes they come up with nice ideas like this one, but i don't feel comfortable knowing whats behind to use it...
I think the point is how much is your personal information and interests are worth for you... if you think $35 is a good price to "Sell yourself to Google" you are free to do it, just don't comment on my point...
If most people understood the information that they take from you and how they match it together to build whatever profiles they want the way they want a lot would change their minds... its funny that everyone complains about NSA the government that its there to protect you and not about corporations that are there to make money on you....

PCAVV said,
My point is how much I would the Google to change as a company and the policies that they have. Sometimes they come up with nice ideas like this one, but i don't feel comfortable knowing whats behind to use it...
I think the point is how much is your personal information and interests are worth for you... if you think $35 is a good price to "Sell yourself to Google" you are free to do it, just don't comment on my point...
If most people understood the information that they take from you and how they match it together to build whatever profiles they want the way they want a lot would change their minds... its funny that everyone complains about NSA the government that its there to protect you and not about corporations that are there to make money on you....

Please, the info collected is in no way personal info. The search they use in their emails for ads is basically the same keyword search that is used by others to search emails for spam/malware. If you want to stay 100% secure, then dont post any info you dont want others to see online...or better yet, dont be online. All this paranoia about Google taking over the internet and logging info is just that, paranoia.

PS: I go to amazon and do a search for a product...when I go back, I have similar products listed/suggested for me and I get emails based on what I searched for. And lots others do the same thing.

SteveyAyo said,
But what does it bring to the table that my 360/One wont do? And how will it work for me as someone who deleted Chrome off his computer over a year ago?

May not work for you but then again, a XBOX wont work for a lot of people either. Those who do not have netflix/internet on their TV, cheaper to pay $35 compared to 250+ as well. And like I said, who knows what features devs will come out with. 35 bucks, thats a deal.

If you have an XBOX, then you probably won't need this. I have an XBOX as well...but I am interested in this device and possible addons/features added later. 35 bucks is nothing.

techbeck said,

May not work for you but then again, a XBOX wont work for a lot of people either. Those who do not have netflix/internet on their TV, cheaper to pay $35 compared to 250+ as well. And like I said, who knows what features devs will come out with. 35 bucks, thats a deal.

If you have an XBOX, then you probably won't need this. I have an XBOX as well...but I am interested in this device and possible addons/features added later. 35 bucks is nothing.

Exactly, this isn't a miracle product that everyone needs. I discussed with a number of people here at work how we don't really need one due to it just being redundant with what we already have, for example, I already have a computer plugged into every TV, so not much need to stream something from another device. If you have and Xbox or an Apple TV with AirPlay or anything like that, you very well may not need it, but $35 vs the cost of most other solutions like this is pretty decent.

As for the comments like "Selling yourself to Google", maybe Google will pick up on your comments and start tailoring tin foil hat ads for you.

SteveyAyo said,
Really only commented to respond to Kalint, who is being a giant douche and has been trolling all day, then I responded to techbeck who replied to my comment, NOW im replying to you because you responded... Its not rocket science

Rude anyone?

SteveyAyo said,
But what does it bring to the table that my 360/One wont do? And how will it work for me as someone who deleted Chrome off his computer over a year ago?

I'll tell you what it brings? The average person has two television sets. Usually 1 in the bedroom and the other in the living room. So why not have a $35 product on your second TV which in return gives you the streaming capability and and $3 months free for Netflix?

Or are you going to make up another reason to bash it and say why nobody needs streaming TV on their other TV?

Thing is, don't confuse this with Google TV, it doesn't work the same way, your interactive UI is done from your handheld system or computer and streaming is pushed to the ChromeCast device.

xendrome said,
Thing is, don't confuse this with Google TV, it doesn't work the same way, your interactive UI is done from your handheld system or computer and streaming is pushed to the ChromeCast device.

The article does say that the cloud is used extensively for the streaming, to keep device usage low.

techbeck said,
does it matter where you buy it from?

I think he means to stream Amazon Prime Instant Video, which would be very nice. I use my Prime video all the time.

I didn't gather if this was something that would need to be built into all the individual apps or if it will work on all general video out. I guess that would be useful to know.

AJerman said,

I think he means to stream Amazon Prime Instant Video, which would be very nice. I use my Prime video all the time.

I didn't gather if this was something that would need to be built into all the individual apps or if it will work on all general video out. I guess that would be useful to know.

Ahh, ok. Didnt think of that.

Would be nice for a dev to make a vid player so I can streak DVDs/vid files

AmazingRando said,
If you can watch it in Chrome on your browser, you can cast it to this device.

Good news. Can you just cast Chrome as it is by any chance? I missed the announcement and hadn't seen it pop up yet as a reply. I did see a pic somewhere where someone had something like Google or Gmail open with it.

Edit: According to the extension below, you CAN cast your current tab, though they say it's beta (what's new for Google) and requires a faster computer and wifi. With the open API I hope we'll see more functionality built for it.

Edited by AJerman, Jul 24 2013, 10:13pm :