3 Comments

Summary:

Using an app to stream local files to your Chromecast? Not after the most recent software update from Google, you’re not: The company intentionally broke the feature according to one prominent developer.

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Chromecast owners using a third-party app to stream local files to their HDTV using Google’s $35 dongle are in the dark. Literally. The latest Chromecast software update intentionally breaks the AllCast app, says Koushik Dutta, who developed the software.

Koush, as he’s known on the web, explains the situation on his Google+ page and shares thoughts on why this is happening:

“They [Google] disabled ‘video_playback’ support from the Chromecast application.

Given that this is the second time they’ve purposefully removed/disabled the ability to play media from external sources, it confirms some of my suspicions that I have had about the Chromecast developer program:

The policy seems to be a heavy handed approach, where only approved content will be played through the device. The Chromecast will probably not be indie developer friendly. The Google TV team will likely only whitelist media companies.”

While Android is known to be “hacker” friendly, I’m not completely surprised that Google is locking down the Chromecast. The company likely wants to guarantee a certain user experience on the product that both has the company name on it and is readily available at the retail level.

Regardless, as a Chromecast user, I’m disappointed. While I love how easy it is to “cast” media from YouTube, Netflix and Google Play Movies and Music, the idea of not being able to share user-created content wireless from a mobile device is limiting. Hopefully Google either reconsiders or provides an official method to do so soon.

  1. The SDK for Chromecast is still a developer preview. It is against the terms to release an app using the SDK without specific permission from Google since an update to the SDK could completely break the app (as proven) and provide a bad user experience

  2. Roger Jennings Monday, August 26, 2013

    @Kevin

    Pulling the plug on ‘video_playback’ support might be “understandable” to the Google business types but it certainly isn’t commendable IMO.

    Cheers?

    –rj

  3. I totalt agree. This year i have been comparing Apple with google and have both Mac devices aswell as chromebook and chromecast. Apple is better 7 days per week. Without the possibility to stream already paid cable tv ie nexus, my choice is Apple TV and iPad. Sorry google you loose one supporter!

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