The Google Chromecast is a small stick of only 5.1 cm dongle to be plugged into the HDMI that lets you stream Netflix, YouTube and other videos and music content over Wi-Fi on your TV for just $35, Google Chromecast can also be used to stream more content partners. Users can play content on their TV from either the Google Chrome web browser on a personal computer, or from a supported app on a mobile device say YouTube app. This small device was announced on July 24, 2013 together with Android Jellybean 4.3 and the new Nexus 7.
Chromecast is typical USB drive. A device of about 2 inches long, with a male HDMI plug at one end, and a microUSB port at the other. The end with the USB port is rounded, and has a small status light. The Chromecast is similar in size to the Plair TV device, and works almost in the same way.
Google Chromecast Setup
Chromecast Setting up the Chromecast is fairly straightforward and will take you few minutes. You just required to plug the device into an open HDMI port on your TV, then attach the USB power cord to the Chromecast.
Another step is to install the Chome Web browser on your PC; good news is Chrome Web browser supports both Windows and Mac OS X. A third step is to install Chromecast setup app from this direct url; go to www.google.com/chromecast/setup. The installer will then connect your PC to the Chromecast and configure the Chromecast to work on your local wireless network. In all, the process takes five minutes or less.
How Chromecast Works
The Chromecast device connects directly to your Wi-Fi network, so streams don’t have to go through an midway, such as your mobile phone or PC. Nevertheless, because they’re on the same network, you can use your mobile device to control what’s playing on screen.
There’s virtually no interface but a small icon will appears in the corner of the Chrome Web browser, and in the lower right corner of any video from sites that support Chromecast which are currently Tube, Netflix and Google Play.
When you click on the Chromecast logo in the upper right corner of the browser shows what Chromecasts are visible on your network, it will show you the title of what’s currently being cast to your TV, along with media controls. Here, you also have the option to cast a tab in the Chrome browser to your TV, and to change streaming quality.
On the iPhone and Android OS tablets, controls are much more basic, and are built into the supported apps themselves. For example in the YouTube app the Chromecast icon will appears in the upper right of any video you play; when pressed you’re given the option to cast the video to your TV, or to watch it on your device. You can’t use the Chrome app on your phone or tablet to cast videos or tabs. Excitingly, if the app doesn’t detect a Chromecast device, the icon will disappear.
Chromecast also lets you send any browser tab to the big screen from Chrome on a Windows PC, Mac or Chromebook. But right now, Google’s calling this a beta feature.
Pros: Easy setup; Compact design; Works on multiple platforms; Good Netflix and YouTube streaming performance.
Cons: Very few streaming sources; Tab casting offers pixelated video for now.
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