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Summary:

Chromecast wants to make it easier to beam videos from your laptop, smart phone or tablet to your TV. Here are our first impressions.

chromecast feature art

Google’s new Chromecast promises to beam videos straight from your tablet, phone or laptop to your TV. Check out this episode of Cord Cutters for some first impressions.

Show notes for this episode:

  • Chromecast is available online for $35. Find out more about the device on the Chromecast website.
  • It looks like the Netfix promotion mentioned in our video isn’t available anymore.
  • Chromecast currently supports streaming from Netflix, YouTube, Google Play and Pandora, but others have announced that they’re going to support the device as well. Developers can find information about the underlying technology here.
  • Google as been working for some time on establishing a competitor to Apple’s AirPlay. Check out our coverage here.

Are you buying a Chromecast stick, or are you sticking with AirPlay? Let us know in the comments below, get in touch with us on Twitter (@cordcutters) or email us at cordcutters @ gigaom.com. Also, please check out our new Google+ Cord Cutters community!

  1. Reblogged this on Dots Of Color and commented:
    I gotta get me one of these!

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  2. Nice job beating everyone to the punch with your review of Chromecast. I ordered mine, yesterday, and am looking forward to getting my hands on it.

    Great job with the review!

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  3. Nice review Janko. Too bad they stopped honoring the 3 months free of Netflix, but then again it was while supplies last. Huge demand for this device.

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  4. Unfortunately there was such high demand that the free 3 months of Netflix is no longer available :(

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  5. If it were a choice between Chromecast and AirPlay, it would be a tougher decision than the actual choice of Chromecast versus Apple TV. AirPlay is a subset of Apple TV.

    The features that keep me anchored to Apple TV for now are the ethernet port, iTunes Movies/TV/Podcast, and more premium content (HBO, ESPN, …). However, it’s only day one for Chromecast and my loyalty is only as strong as the offer. When Chromecast surpasses the ATV offer (if it does), I’l switch.

    I’m really curious to hear from anyone who may have tried Chromecast with SlingPlayer running in a Chrome tab. If that works, it would be big.

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    1. Agreed … the other two items? Photo screen saver and music … curious to see how those work. Too bad the Chromecast doesn’t have an ethernet port … preformace would probably be a lot better.

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  6. nice!

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  7. Wish you would have shown the device and package too, haven’t seen that anywhere else yet. In the presentation Google said it’s USB powered but everybody seems to ignore that, so many might think it’s powered through HDMI somehow.
    This is a very Google thing and they don’t do that much anymore, nice to see something positive from them for a change ( just dumped Google Search because they ruined Moto , no microSD slots anymore means Moto doesn’t exist for me and i hate that).
    Loving it because it’s easy to add functionality, no need for Google to do do anything to add functionality, no need for the user to instal an app, devs just got to add the functionality to their apps so it’s easy for the ecosystem to grow.
    It does feel half baked, with latency rather high, no local media streaming, no device to device functionality (phone to phone), no GTV integration. I assume video chat doesn’t have a cast button, google docs having teh functionality wouldn’t hurt, they should also add Youtube live events to Google Now and i really hope they don’t censor anything (like porn, since big US corporations are afraid of religious freaks and don’t get how surprisingly open the young generation is about porn).
    The low price helps but Google failed to find a simple way to explain the device to the consumer. It’s not easy , you can’t say it makes your TV cloud enabled or a thin client. At least they didn’t called it ChromeTV ,repeating the GTV mistake, even if this is more about content than GTV.
    It’s the first time in years that anything ‘smart TV’ related gets me excited., it’s simple, it’s open, it’s cheap.

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  8. Bought the last one today at my local Best Buy. Got it running pretty quickly, and although I like it I wonder whether this thing will disappoint a lot of people.

    First, it’s not nearly as capable as Roku or AppleTV. Android and Amazon prime don’t really like each other. There’s no separate audio out. Sure, it’s less expensive, but how big a barrier is the extra $65 for people who have large TVs?

    Second, setup is pretty easy, but not as easy as setting up a Roku (Even on a rock-solid WiFi connection I lost Chromecast sync several times, having to reboot the dongle, re-launch the app….). The packaging, documentation and website don’t tell you what the little button on the dongle is for. Even the website is badly designed – most links go to non-Chromecast Google products, counter to what you’d assume as a visitor. And once it’s set up, Roku is far easier to use than Chromecast.

    One thing I have yet to test – whether I can use WiFi tethering (and unlimited cellular data) to run this little thing in a hotel room. That would be useful. But complicated for a lot of folks.

    I’d guess that Chromecast is being reviewed based on what might be, not on what it is. And there will be huge volumes of returns.

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    1. montanogreg Friday, July 26, 2013

      I’m very curious to see if tether would work with this as well since we canceled out home internet long ago and still have unlimited 4G data plans. Reply back when you find out if you don’t mind. I’m very interested in this but tether is a deal breaker for me.

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  9. bottom line, will this device work with unlimited phone data plan, no wifi provided by internet companies ie cox etc??

    Who cares if it runs on internet generated wifi if you still are forced to pay ungodly internet prices…..

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  10. does it work with unlimited phone data tethering or do you need wifi? thanks!

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