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Eleven more countries: Google launches Chromecast in Europe and Canada

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The rumors were true: Google (s GOOG) is taking its Chromecast streaming stick beyond U.S. borders. Chromecast will officially be available for sale in Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Sweden and the U.K. starting Wednesday. Local prices will vary, but the suggested retail price for the device is £30 in the U.K., €35 in continental Europe and CAN $39 in Canada, compared to $35 in the U.S.

The international roll-out will be accompanied by partnerships with a number of bigger publishers. The BBC is bringing Chromecast capabilities to its iPlayer iOS and Android app, and France TV Pluzz as well as SFR TV will now cast from both mobile platforms as well. Germany’s Watchever is even enabling casting from iOS, Android and its website.

Google’s VP of product management Mario Queiroz said in a blog post Tuesday that Germany’s Maxdome and France’s Canalplay will soon gain Chromecast support as well. He added:

“We recently opened up Chromecast to developers, and in a few short weeks more than 3,000 developers worldwide have signed up to bring their apps and websites to Chromecast.”

Chromecast will be available in these new markets via Google Play, Amazon, (S AMZN) Currys PC World, FNAC, Saturn, Media Markt and elsewhere, according to the post.

This international launch comes after Google executive Sundar Pichai revealed earlier this month that Google has sold “millions” of Chromecast streaming sticks in the U.S. since its launch in July.

8 Responses to “Eleven more countries: Google launches Chromecast in Europe and Canada”

  1. Richard Plumb

    Miracast is not ideal as the Mobile device needs to remain active. Chromecast basically hands over the stream URL to the stick and that is doing the streaming, so you can close your mobile app and it still plays – the mobile device is a smart remote control.

    Chromecast uses the DIAL protocol which many other devices already do – smart TVs from Sony and LG, roku boss etc. i would prefer for DIAL to be adopted as the standard, rather than this specific spin on he protocol.

  2. hundoman

    Why would anyone buy this Google Chromecast stuff when it is so propriety to only a few apps and OS’s, requires a Wi-Fi network, and only works in 2.4Ghz space,

    Miracast is clearly the better technology for streaming content to a display as it is Wi-Fi Direct, supports 2.4ghz + 5Ghz channels with N and AC support, comes from the Wi-Fi Alliance that sets industry standards worldwide for IEEE 802.11.

    Further Micracast doesn’t require any apps to stream your desktop/screen and it is built into Android OS 4.2 or later, Microsoft Windows 8.1, and Blackberry 10.2. Third parties have build apps that allow you to use it on Windows 7, 8 and Linux.

    Obviously Apple will not build support at the OS level for Miracast for any of their product lines or how else they going to sell their propriety devices which don’t ever seem to manage to stream content that reliably to a display in the first place.

    It also seems that Gigaom sure hasn’t covered this Miracast standard with any of the same vigor that they manage to cover All Things Google and Apple for streaming.

    • Miracast mirrors your screen. Mirroring provides a simple way to get everything that can display on your phone on your TV. However, it is a much less powerful solution than casting in the long run.

      The Chromecast lets app developers put the controls on your phone and the video on your TV. It requires little power from the phone. You can access other apps while the TV continues playing whatever you’ve cast. Miracast requires a one-to-one mapping of what is on your phone to your screen. This means you cannot play one video while queuing up more. If you turn off your device, the video you were watching stops. I think if you used the two solutions side by side, you’d see how much more powerful casting can be compared to mirroring.

      However, it’s true that more app support is needed. Once that happens, the benefits of a mirroring solution will almost completely disappear.

      • hundoman

        In the corporate conference room space where I work you don’t want apps to have to have the IT department to support or loading of apps to be able to connect to a display or projector in the room. All you want to do is mirror your content to get up for a presentation.

        AppleTV’s and AirPlay don’t work in a corporate environment as they have SSID issues and don’t support enterprise security feature sets. But despite these limitations more and more Apple stuff is going in.

        The Wi-Fi Direct route and Miracast holds the promise of being very compelling when you have to manage hundreds if not thousands of conference rooms and just want to get content up on a display or projector without having to even deal with Wi-Fi access issues or dongles such as Google Chromecast is.

        • This may be true. But the Chromecast is sold as a consumer device for a certain use case. What is best for the corporate world is unlikely to be best for watching video on your couch.

          I would argue that a Chromecast style app is probably more useful in a corporate environment as well. For instance, the TV can be displaying a slide while the tablet displays your notes to be read alongside the slide, with easy navigation to other parts of the presentation. Like I said before, it’s a more powerful solution if the apps are setup for it. There are definitely still problems left to be solved when it comes to implementation.

  3. That leaves bringing Google Cast to more devices and getting more apps for the platform as the remaining big goals. Maybe controlling playback from Android Wear is in the cards? I would have thought they would have included that in the concept video they released today. It seemed like an easy way to tie the two together. Maybe even create a futuristic halo effect for the Chromecast.