In a world of ubiquitous computing, life would be a lot simpler if we did not have to learn new behaviors and interfaces each time we switched screens, if we could have one consistent, intuitive experience no matter where we are or what we are doing. With the release of tiny Chromecast media streaming stick that will cost just $35 Google is trying to do just that
Google Chromecast is a small and affordable device that simply plugs into an HDMI port of a high-definition TV and allows to use a phone, tablet or laptop to "cast" online content to the big TV screen. It works with Netflix, YouTube, Google Play Movies & TV, and Google Play Music, with more apps like Pandora coming soon. In addition to apps like Netflix, one can use Chromecast to bring a broad range of content available on the web to big screen, thanks to a new feature in the Chrome browser that allows to project any browser tab to a TV.
To ensure a great Chromecast experience over time, Google has built Google Cast, a technology that enables developers to build consistent, intuitive multi-screen experiences across mobile devices and TVs. A handful of early developers are already working on enabling Google Cast technology in their apps, so more supported apps are coming soon. And while the Chromecast device is the first instantiation of Google Cast, we expect the technology to be embedded in a range of hardware from our partners in the future.
Unlike in case of other streaming solutions, users can still multitask – send emails or surf the web – while enjoying what’s on the TV screen. It works across platforms, including Google Android tablets and smartphones, Apple’s iPhones and iPads, Chrome for Mac and Microsoft Windows (more to come), so a personal device is also a remote control.
Starting today, the Chromecast device is available for $35 on Google Play, Amazon.com and BestBuy.com. It will be available in Best Buy retail stores across the U.S. starting July 28. For a limited time, customers will also get three months of Netflix included.