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Old 07-24-2013, 01:16 PM  
SuperChief SuperChief is offline
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Google introduces Chromecast - 35 bucks?!?

This looks like it will really test Roku/Apple TV. For that price point, I'm not sure how it couldn't. From what I'm hearing, you can stream anything from your desktop to the connected device, but not from mobile. Only supported apps from mobile will stream. More to come, I'm sure.

http://cnet.co/1c2ZBTm

Google's taking yet another stab at the living room.

Today Google introduced Chromecast, a stick-like device that connects to one of your TV's HDMI inputs and accepts video pushed from smartphones, tablets and the Chrome browser. It's available for just $35 starting today from the Google Play store in the US, with availability in other countries to follow.

The compact 2-inch device will work with Netflix, YouTube, Google Play Movies and TV, and Google Play Music at launch, with support for future services, including Pandora, coming soon. It's a cross-platform device, with support for both Android and iOS devices, as well as the Chrome browser on both Windows and Mac computers. More details are currently available on the Google's Chrome blog.

Chromecast's approach is different than most devices on the market: it's half-remote, half-streaming media box. The idea is instead of designing a TV-optimized user interface, you'll be able to select and control content from your smartphone or tablet. Browse the Netflix app, find your content, then tell it to play in your living room. Chromecast even goes one step further, by automatically switching your TV to the correct input and giving you the ability to adjust the volume using your mobile devices built-in volume controls. The ability for Android devices to pause content without unlocking the phone first seemed particularly well-implemented.

You'll also be able to juggle control between multiple mobile devices, with Chromecast syncing between connected devices. You can start playing Netflix from your tablet, then later use a smartphone to fast-forward. Using the YouTube app, you can also create a shared queue of content, stringing together several short web videos for an extended viewing session. All-in-all, Google's demos looked particularly slick.

As sleek as the Chromecast device looks, Google's initial presentation skimmed over some of the rougher edges. The specs in the Google Play store list both a USB power cable and a power adapter, which indicate that the Chromecast will have some wires hanging off it -- it's not truly "just a stick". It's the same method PLAiR used to power its similar HDMI-based streaming stick.

The hardware itself supports 2.4 GHz WiFi 802.11, which isn't quite as nice as the dual-band Wi-Fi offered on Roku's Streaming Stick. The internal processor is capable of playing back full 1080p video with 5.1 surround sound.

I haven't had any hands-on time with the Chromecast yet, but from the initial announcement, the biggest limitation appears to be app support. Supporting only four services out-of-the-gate puts Chromecast well behind established players like Roku and Apple TV, and limited functionality was also one of the major knocks against the ill-fated Nexus Q.

However, the big difference with Chromecast ultralow $35 price. It's a lot easier to accept those limitations when you haven't paid much upfront and the low price should also help spread adoption, which should encourage services to include Chromecast at a faster rate.

This is a developing story so stay tuned for further details as we get them.
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Old 07-26-2013, 07:54 AM   #46
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Okay, thanks. I'll just pick up an HDMI adapter for my iPhone then
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Old 07-26-2013, 08:19 AM   #47
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See above plus the fact that if $600 iPhone doesn't have the processing power to run flash then neither will this $35 dingus that's the size of a thumb drive.
It has less to do with "processing power" than Adobe's refusal to support mobile platforms. Adobe made a conscious decision with Flash Player; they set in motion its death. HTML 5 FTW.
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Old 07-26-2013, 10:04 AM   #48
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It has less to do with "processing power" than Adobe's refusal to support mobile platforms. Adobe made a conscious decision with Flash Player; they set in motion its death. HTML 5 FTW.
Based on the way they've described it, my guess is that Chromecast won't be able to play "Flash" necessarily - it can play flash VIDEO. In other words, it doesn't need to process all of the other junk that comes with Flash since they probably just embedded a generic .flv player that can pick up whatever video is in focus on Chrome.
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Old 07-26-2013, 11:59 AM   #49
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Based on the way they've described it, my guess is that Chromecast won't be able to play "Flash" necessarily - it can play flash VIDEO. In other words, it doesn't need to process all of the other junk that comes with Flash since they probably just embedded a generic .flv player that can pick up whatever video is in focus on Chrome.
What caveman Chest want know is can watch firstrow on magic stick?

Many thank advance.
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Old 07-26-2013, 12:05 PM   #50
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Originally Posted by Chest Rockwell View Post
What caveman Chest want know is can watch firstrow on magic stick?

Many thank advance.
My guess would be yes, but it's tough to say for sure until people start trying it out.
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Old 07-26-2013, 12:10 PM   #51
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My guess would be yes, but it's tough to say for sure until people start trying it out.
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Old 07-26-2013, 12:52 PM   #52
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So I ordered from the Google Play store before 1pm PST the day of the release. I've already been informed that it's been shipped, and I just got the Netflix promo code in my inbox. When I originally ordered, it said it would be shipped in August. Interesting.
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Old 07-26-2013, 01:05 PM   #53
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So I ordered from the Google Play store before 1pm PST the day of the release. I've already been informed that it's been shipped, and I just got the Netflix promo code in my inbox. When I originally ordered, it said it would be shipped in August. Interesting.
You'll definitely have to give us a review once you get it. For the price, I'm tempted to just get one myself, but I don't really have any use for it until they get more apps on there (two Smart TV's and a Roku). I'd love to know if it's brilliant or yet another clunker.
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Old 07-26-2013, 01:13 PM   #54
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You'll definitely have to give us a review once you get it. For the price, I'm tempted to just get one myself, but I don't really have any use for it until they get more apps on there (two Smart TV's and a Roku). I'd love to know if it's brilliant or yet another clunker.
I'll put up a review after a thorough testing, for sure. As I was telling Teedub on Twitter, it's really meant for my old man (as I already have other options), but I need to do some "testing" and make sure it'll be up to par
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Old 07-26-2013, 01:27 PM   #55
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Since I travel a lot, I'm fairly interested. Especially at the price point. Perfect for keeping in my carry on and just hooking up to a hotel TV. Now if I could get Sunday Ticket on this, I'd be set.
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Old 07-26-2013, 05:51 PM   #56
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Looks like I may have been wrong in my post earlier. Some reports are that you can push anything that's in a web browser to the TV. Best to wait and see or just deal with the fact that you may have dropped a a third to half what you could have spent on something like the Roku or Apple TV that we already know about.

Unlurking...the Apple TV might be good for that situation too. It's about the size of a hockey puck and you can get SportsCenter on demand. If you could get Sunday Ticket or Red Zone on there? Might push a lot of folks to cut the cable company out.

I think the odds of that are slim though. DirecTV will pay for that deal until they go under to keep it exclusive.
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Old 07-26-2013, 05:59 PM   #57
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Looks like I may have been wrong in my post earlier. Some reports are that you can push anything that's in a web browser to the TV. Best to wait and see or just deal with the fact that you may have dropped a a third to half what you could have spent on something like the Roku or Apple TV that we already know about.

Unlurking...the Apple TV might be good for that situation too. It's about the size of a hockey puck and you can get SportsCenter on demand. If you could get Sunday Ticket or Red Zone on there? Might push a lot of folks to cut the cable company out.

I think the odds of that are slim though. DirecTV will pay for that deal until they go under to keep it exclusive.
My guess is that you COULD get something like NFLST to work using the mirroring function, but it wouldn't work that well. The way it's really designed to work is that you use another device to point it to whatever video needs to be played, then it connects directly to that video (independent of the controlling device).

For something that's not supported like NFLST, it has to actually stream a mirror of the tab from Chrome. That might work, but I bet it's choppy at best, and you'd have to keep your computer with Chrome open the entire time.
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Old 07-26-2013, 06:07 PM   #58
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I actually don't have a TV or cable/satellite anymore. Ends up stealing too much of my time, so I just occasionally hit up Hulu or Netflix. I'm also anti-iOS, so no AppleYV for me.

Might order just to try with the preseason NFL streaming package.
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Old 07-26-2013, 06:41 PM   #59
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My guess is that you COULD get something like NFLST to work using the mirroring function, but it wouldn't work that well. The way it's really designed to work is that you use another device to point it to whatever video needs to be played, then it connects directly to that video (independent of the controlling device).

For something that's not supported like NFLST, it has to actually stream a mirror of the tab from Chrome. That might work, but I bet it's choppy at best, and you'd have to keep your computer with Chrome open the entire time.
Right...and at that point you're working really hard to not plug your computer into the television.
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Old 07-30-2013, 08:39 AM   #60
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Got my last night. Set up took a minute and everything worked as expected after that. I have a smart TV that was constantly dropping it's connection and has been unusable. I was streaming Netflix all night and also played a couple of Youtube clips.

Thumbs up from me.
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