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"Chromecast" Added To Google Play's Devices List, What Is It? (updated)

Discussion in 'Off-Topic Discussion' started by CatfishRivers, Jul 24, 2013.

  1. CatfishRivers
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    CatfishRivers Well-Known Member

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    Intrigue! I love a good mystey -:)

    ?Chromecast? Added to Google Play?s Devices List, What is It? (Updated) ? Droid Life (click for full article)

    by Kellex - July 23, 2013

    "Remember a few weeks back when we reported that Google was working on an ultra-affordable Chrome dongle for TVs or displays called the Chromekey? At the time, we were sure that Chromekey (still sort of do actually) would be the device name and that you would be able to "CAST" (term used by our source) your Chrome browser from desktop or mobile Chrome browser through it to any display to have a bigger browsing experience. Well, according to Google Play support docs, a new device under the name Chromecast has appeared. Is this related, the same thing, or just a new service that will work with select Chrome devices?


    Chromecast showed up moments ago through support pages, but it currently redirects to a broken link. (It has also now been removed from the list.)


    We made a prediction on last week's DL Show that we would see the Chromekey at tomorrow's breakfast event with Sundar, and that may be spot on if Chromecast is at all related. For this device to show in the official supported devices list, an announcement must be imminent.


    To read our entire report on the Chromekey, hit up this link.


    Update: They have since removed Chromecast from the list of Google Play devices. With that said, a reader of ours did jump in a support chat with Google Play support and was given some interesting info about Chromecast being some type of TV service. The support rep mentioned that it is only supported by certain devices and also only available in select areas, but that you will have to pay for it.


    If Chromecast is a new TV service, then the Chromekey could still be in the works as a separate device."
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2013
  2. CatfishRivers
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    CatfishRivers Well-Known Member

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  3. CatfishRivers
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    CatfishRivers Well-Known Member

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    Hmmmm. According to the article a Google Play support rep said Chromecast is a pay TV service that only works on certain devices and will be available in limited areas.

    I sure hope Google makes Chromecast available on GTV devices. Anything that can boost sales will be a positive at this point.

    If it is indeed a pay TV service - IMO the reason it would only be available in limited areas is due to the stranglehold that cable TV companies have over the content providers. The licensing for content is very complex and some content providers might not contractually be able to offer content to Google in certain markets (due to the content providers affiliation with the cable TV companies).
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2013
  4. CatfishRivers
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    CatfishRivers Well-Known Member

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    Ok Chromcast is available on Google Play now for pre-order. Apparently it's the $35 dongle that was previously referred to as "Chromekey" - and it mirrors content to your TV:

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

    From the Google Play Store:

    "Chromecast
    The easiest way to enjoy online video and music on your TV.
    Plug Chromecast into any HDTV and control it with your existing smartphone, tablet, or laptop. Send your favorites from Google Play, YouTube, Netflix, and Chrome to your TV with the press of a button.
    Ships soon
    Ships by August 2, 2013. Learn more
    Add to cart - $35.00

    Add to Wishlist
    Buy now and get 3 months of Netflix included*"
  5. Carlszone
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    Carlszone Well-Known Member

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    So it's basically a streaming device?
  6. mrspock
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    mrspock Active Member

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    More like "Airplay" for devices using Chrome (and possibly other apps in the future)


    EDIT: Just reading a bit more, it seems the dongle only receives the url from the source device then processes the url to stream the content.
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2013
  7. CatfishRivers
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    CatfishRivers Well-Known Member

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    It will be interesting to see if Chromekey has a negative impact on GTV sales. I know it doesn't do the HDMI overlays and interaction with a cable TV box that GTV does - but IMO some people with tablet/phone/computer that might of been considering purchasing a GTV device - will instead just plunk down $35 for the Chromekey:

    http://gtvsource.com/2013/06/07/chromekey-rumor/ (click for full article)

    Chromekey: A Device With Features Google TV Should Have Gotten Long Ago!

    posted on Jun 7th 2013 at 10:19pm by Edgar Cervantes

    "Rarely do rumors upset me as much as today, but this one really hits right in the gut for any Google TV fan. Google is said to be working on a dongle called Chromekey. The product would be able to mirror any device's Chrome browser to a TV.

    Droid-Life's sources state that it would cost $35 straight from the Google Play Store and other major retailers like Best Buy and Amazon. Powered via USB and connected to the TV via HDMI, it would connect to your network and link to your Chrome browsers across devices. The streaming/mirroring feature is said to go under the name of "CAST", which it will be enabled after an upcoming update to Chrome.

    Why is this upsetting? Simply because mirroring is a feature Google TV users have been begging for all along! It is honestly the only reason why I also bought an Apple TV - to be able to mirror my computer's screen. It just seems rather unfair for loyal GTV enthusiasts to see Google working on a said Chromekey and offering a completely new device for it."
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2013
  8. CatfishRivers
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    CatfishRivers Well-Known Member

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    Last edited: Jul 24, 2013
  9. CatfishRivers
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    CatfishRivers Well-Known Member

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  10. CatfishRivers
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    CatfishRivers Well-Known Member

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    Google Chromecast Demo at launch by Google:



    (Sorry about the choppy video quality - If I find a better video I'll post it later.)
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 30, 2014
  11. CatfishRivers
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    CatfishRivers Well-Known Member

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    I just watched the video demonstration. It seems pretty cool in that the content is actually streamed from the cloud to the TV. So this means full 1080P resolution and 5.1 surround sound. Also you can use your phone/tablet/computer to do other tasks simultaneously while the Chromecast content is streaming on the TV.
  12. zim2dive
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    zim2dive Active Member

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    I don't see why a GTV network connected device shouldn't also be a "receiver" for Chromecast material.. ie. I should be able to "cast" to my Co-Star instead of adding yet another device to the mix.
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  13. CatfishRivers
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    CatfishRivers Well-Known Member

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    Google Chromecast Device Is A Game Changer - Forbes (click for full article)

    by Tony Bradley - July 24, 2013

    From the article:

    "At $99, Apple TV has always been very affordable. It's not cheap, but it seems like a reasonable amount of money for what it does, and it's an amount of money someone can find if the product has value for them. "Affordable" may no longer be good enough, though, because the Chromecast is an impulse buy at $35. A couple spends that much just to go see a movie and have some popcorn and a soda.

    I won't be surprised to see a price cut from Apple for Apple TV very soon. I don't expect Apple to match or undercut the Chromecast, but Apple needs to drop the device to $49 just to remain competitive."

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    A $49 Apple TV just to be competitive? But where does this leave Google TV? -:( Wow this author is really bullish on the Chromecast. I wish at least that Google could add Chromecast functionality to GTV devices via a software update.

    As the article mentioned - One thing about Airplay with Apple TV is that you can use it with ethernet. I have read about countless wi-fi problems with the android TV dongles from China. If the Chromecast has wi-fi issues it could pretty much kill the product IMO...
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2013
  14. jonw747
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    jonw747 Active Member

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    Indeed. It's way too early to handicap this race, but without a doubt at $35 with $24 of free Netflix even for current customers... buying a Chromecast is a no brainer. In a week we'll no doubt all be complaining about bugs, lockups, lack of support, CEC problems, DRM problems, Wifi slowness, etc, etc. Or maybe Google will have just nailed this out of the gate? [​IMG]
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  15. CatfishRivers
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    CatfishRivers Well-Known Member

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    Here is a hands on review of Chromecast:

    http://mashable.com/2013/07/24/chromecast-hands-on/

    Hands On With Google Chromecast

    "Google announced Google Chromecast on Wednesday, a new pint-sized $35 device streams content to your television from your computer, Android and even iOS device.

    The box dubs it "the easiest way to watch online video on your TV." During its press conference, Google demonstrated a wireless device that not only connects to your television while hiding behind it, but also is exceptionally easy to operate.

    After Wednesday's event, I tried out Chromecast and found that it's just as easy to use as it appears."
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2013
  16. CatfishRivers
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    CatfishRivers Well-Known Member

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    I dunno - to be honest I wasn't that blown away from the hands-on review. Netflix & Youtube probably work good - but the Chrome browser for all other content is still in beta. And it showed in the review:

    From the review:

    *** Google is currently working on adding support for streaming from the Chrome browser as well. I tried out the feature, which is currently in beta; it doesn't work nearly as well as the Netflix and YouTube integrations. The feature uses WebRTC, a new standard for browser-to-browser communication, and essentially engages your TV in a video chat with your Chrome browser.

    In its current form, scrolling lags a bit and video is choppy - both issues you might face when video chatting with friends. The issues were likely intensified by the poor data connection at the demo event space. ***

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Hmmm and why does it seem that almost every time Google tries to make an introductory presentation - there is always the 'same-ole same-ole' excuse "of poor data connection at the demo space event"? -;)
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2013
  17. jonw747
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    jonw747 Active Member

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    I suppose it's technically possible, but the decision to support it may not be trivial. The reason they called it a Chromecast is because the device is just sitting there running Chrome until something comes along to tell it to go to a web page. GTV has a web browser too, and it can be upgraded to support whatever it needs to support, but it's not running all the time and that could make things clunky. Running AirPlay on your GTV by comparison seems to be pretty light weight and fast.

    Some people are reporting that there may be TV's that can supply power over the HDMI plug, and if your TV doesn't support that, then a USB port may be able to be used to power the device rather than the AC wall wart.
  18. CatfishRivers
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    CatfishRivers Well-Known Member

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    Here is another hands-on review of Chromecast - it pretty much confirms what the other hands-on review from Mashable said. Netflix and YouTube app good - but the beta Chrome app not good:

    Hands-On Review Of New Google Chromecast - Forbes

    From the review:

    "I then had to update both the Netflix and YouTube apps on my iPhone and Android tablet and, with those installed, was able to view videos on the TV from either device. I was also able to use Google's beta Chrome app on my Mac to view webpages and videos on the TV with OK, but less than perfect results. The videos I played from the Mac were out of focus for a minute or two but eventually looked fine. Though it's not advertised a web surfing solution, I tried it with mixed results. I was able to browse the web with a bit of a lag and was able to access Gmail, but the screen resolution was off and not very legible. Still, for its intended purposes, the Chromecast did an excellent job of displaying YouTube and Netflix."
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2013
  19. zim2dive
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    zim2dive Active Member

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    Apparently we will get it... Google TV getting Chromecast support in a future update
  20. CatfishRivers
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    CatfishRivers Well-Known Member

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    A couple of things that I have read that I want to mention:

    1) The Chromecast Chrome app will be in beta for several months - but there is supposed to be significant improvement coinciding with the release of Chrome 30. (Currently Chrome is only on Chrome 29 beta - so that's why it will be a while until we see the expected improvement with the Chrome beta app). As of now the other Chromecast apps such as YouTube, Netflix, and the Google Play Movies are not in beta and they work good.

    2) The Chromecast Chrome app supports Flash and HTML5 - however it doesn't support Microsoft Silverlight and Apple Quicktime.

    3) Concerning Chromebook support - currently Chromecast only supports the Chromebook Pixel - however Google is working on adding support for other Chromebooks.

    4) Second Generation GTV devices (those with the ARM chip) and the GTV Jellybean update - will receive an update giving support for Chromecast. Google has confirmed this. This means that after the GTV Chromecast update - your GTV device will have Chromecast functionality (without the need for the $35 Chromecast dongle). As I mentioned this won't happen until after the Jellybean update. I'm thinking that the Chromecast support will actually be a part of the GTV Jellybean update.
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2013

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