Print 68 comment(s) - last by Cheesew1z69.. on Jul 27 at 3:34 PM

It's available in the U.S. starting today, with other countries to follow

Google introduced a media streaming stick today that allows users to watch videos from services like YouTube and Netflix on their TVs. 

The streaming stick is called Chromecast, and it connects to a TV's HDMI input to wirelessly sync with mobile devices or the Chrome browser allowing users to view videos, photos and more right on their TVs.

In other words, if you choose a movie from your smartphone's Netflix app, you can use Chromecast to play it on your TV.

The Google stick performs the duties of a media streaming box and a remote control. Chromecast is compatible with Android and iOS-powered smartphones and tablets, allowing users to not only use these devices to choose the videos they want to watch on their TVs, but also wirelessly control the videos with them (play, pause, stop, rewind, etc.). 

Chromecast is also compatible with the Chrome browser on any PC or Mac. 

A couple of other cool features include screen-mirroring, which will show the user's activity on their Chrome browser including videos and photos, and use of multiple devices to control Chromecast (for instance, if you play a movie from your smartphone's Netflix app, you can use your tablet as a remote control). 

Chromecast will even automatically switch your TV to the correct input upon choosing to watch videos, photos, etc. via Chromecast.

Chromecast's hardware measures a mere 2 inches, and it supports 2.4GHz Wi-Fi 802.11. It can play back 1080p video with 5.1 surround sound, and comes with a USB power cable and a power adapter. 

At launch, Chromecast can only support four apps: Netflix, YouTube, Google Music and Google Movies. However, an upside to this is that Google is offering both new and existing Netflix users three free months of the service if they buy Chromecast. 

Despite its limited app selection, Google said more options will be coming soon. But for now, the tech giant is hoping to use the device's convenient features and low price of only $35 to draw customers in. 

Yes, I said $35. So it doesn't have the options that competitors like Apple TV and Roku's Streaming Stick have, but the attractive price should set sales in motion. 

Chromecast is available starting today in the U.S., and will come to other countries later. 

Google has had a busy week of launches so far. It also unveiled the new Nexus 7 tablet, which features a a quad-core 1.5Ghz Snapdragon S4 Pro processor, a 1920x1200 pixel resolution, a 7-inch 1080p HD screen, a 5-megapixel rear-facing camera, dual stereo speakers, and prices of $229 for 16GB and $269 for 32GB. 

Additionally, Google introduced Android version 4.3 Jelly Bean -- which will power the new Nexus 7 tablet. 

Source: Google Chrome Blog

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good idea
By GulWestfale on 7/24/2013 10:01:15 PM , Rating: 3
i actually bought a $3 MHL cable for my galaxy off amazon, but my brother and his wife would need a $45 adapter from apple to connect their iCrap to their TV. so a 35 buck streaming stick is just what they need, especially since google claims it's easy for non-techies to use (would they have bought iphones if they were techies??).
it's alos a lot more convenient than having a cable dangle around. sure, stuff like miracast is nice, but who's gonna buy a new TV just for that? so the stick really is a good idea, especially at this price.

RE: good idea
By Mitch101 on 7/24/2013 10:30:37 PM , Rating: 2
I would pick it up in hopes that XBMC can be flashed onto the device. But $35.00 is kind of throw away money even if all you use it for is Netflix.

I have a Matricom MX2 and they plan on having Miracast soon it might even be in there I see 4.2.2 came out today. Still I suspect Google developers are much better than Matricoms.

RE: good idea
By GulWestfale on 7/24/2013 11:27:22 PM , Rating: 2
well i figure netflix is 8 bucks a month, so the stick is basically free.

RE: good idea
By marvdmartian on 7/25/2013 7:53:54 AM , Rating: 2
Or $11, if you do the math. ;)

$35 - (3 x $8) = $11

RE: good idea
By GulWestfale on 7/25/2013 8:44:17 AM , Rating: 2
got downrated by the appletards again hahahaaa

RE: good idea
By xti on 7/25/2013 9:27:18 AM , Rating: 2
yeah I am waiting until things like plex are supported, then this becomes a cheap roku.

RE: good idea
By ipay on 7/25/2013 4:06:43 PM , Rating: 2
Plex support would be cool, but out of Google's sphere of influence, so I wouldn't expect such a thing to come from them. That's what my Raspberry Pi's are for.

RE: good idea
By FlyBri on 7/25/2013 7:05:43 PM , Rating: 2
@GulWestfale -- While having an MHL cable dangling around is not optimal, the MHL cable actually STREAMS what's displaying on the phone -- it's actually doing screen mirroring, which means that any audio and picture that is displayed on your phone will be on the TV. All the Chromecast dongle does is really let you use your phone as a remote while it pulls up the video, etc. through the web directly. Also, the Chromecast only works with a few apps -- it doesn't not actually stream anything directly from the phone.

Actually, the YouTube playback and remote capabilities are already available via the YouTube apps in many smart TV's and through the YouTube app on the Xbox, for example. So for people who only need remote capabilities, the Chromecast may work for them. But I believe many people are misunderstanding how it works, thinking that it will actually STREAM content directly from their phone, when in fact it CAN NOT, which is only what an MHL cable or Miracast adapter can do. And for people who want true streaming, they can pick up a Miracast/WiDi adapter for $60.

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