The state of the Chromecast

A few weeks ago, I purchased a Google Chromecast to attach to my mom’s TV. What attracted me to it was its relative simplicity for a terrific price, yet I see in it a greater potential once more developers update apps to be able to utilize it. In my use of it so far, it works pretty well when casting YouTube videos from either my phone’s mobile app or Mom’s laptop, although there have been times where the dongle freezes up. I would like to see better management of the TV queue between devices, so hopefully that comes in future updates. The video streaming itself on the Chromecast suffers little to no buffering issues on my mom’s internet connection. The controls from my mobile device are very responsive, although if I play multiple videos in a row, the phone may take a few seconds to display the current video which is playing. Casting tabs from the Google Chrome browser from the laptop also runs with little hiccup even when streaming other videos fullscreen, but that’s likely because this laptop has great processing power with its Core i7. In all, it does what I expected.

In the next year, I would expect the Chromecast to be able to stream live YouTube videos as well as more media services to make their apps compatible. With mobile devices becoming more advanced, there isn’t a need for a TV peripheral to be bigger than the Chromecast as more media reside in the cloud. There is a desire for media stored on local devices to be cast, but there is an advantage on having the Chromecast doing most of the work, especially as it pertains to mobile devices. Hopefully extensions will be available for competing web browsers, but if owning a Chromecast gets more people to use the Chrome browser, I would chalk that as a win for Google. There’s been a few months for some kinks to be worked out where the Chromecast will be a great holiday gift for those with an HDMI-equipped TV.

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3 thoughts on “The state of the Chromecast

  1. Good information to know. I was looking at them for updating websites “on the go”.

    The video hiccups donn’t really mean much to me, but if it does that well with video, updating websites shouldn’t be a problem.

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    • I don’t know how it would be used to update websites, as the Chromecast is designed as a media consumption peripheral. The screen extending capability (which is in beta) through the Chrome browser extension looks to be a workaround for media sites which don’t yet cast natively. (E.g., you could cast a tab which contains a video and then set the video player to full screen, which would result in the TV connected to the Chromecast showing the video full screen.)

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