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Google to take on Apple TV with $35 Chromecast streaming device for iOS & Android

post #1 of 226
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Google continued its push into hardware manufacturing on Tuesday by announcing Chromecast, a new streaming device that will go head-to-head with the Apple TV set-top box for just over a third of its price.



Alongside the refreshed Nexus 7 revealed today, Google also showed off the Chromecast, a diminutive streaming attachment that plugs into the HDMI port on a television. Using the Chromecast, users can stream and queue material from Android and iOS devices, Chrome OS devices like the Chromebook Pixel, and OS X and Windows PCs with Google's Chrome browser installed.

The Chromecast device itself interfaces with interoperable services directly, enabling users to continue using their devices even as content streams. It works with music content and videos from YouTube, as well as with apps like Netflix, both on iOS and Android.

chromecast-130724.jpg


During the presentation of the new device, Google executives showed it picking up streaming content from both an Android and iOS phone, continuing a user's YouTube experience with just the press of a button. Users will find that the YouTube, Google Play Music, and Netflix apps on iOS and Android will now integrate a "Cast" button, which will tell the device to push video or audio content to a ChromeCast device on the same network.

Multiple users with compatible apps installed on their mobile devices and traditional computers can also collaborate to queue content and share to the same television.

Showing off the device, Google execs repeatedly made thinly veiled references to Apple's "beloved hobby" the Apple TV set-top box.

"Unlike other solutions," one said in the course of the presentation, "we will not force you to have the same operating system on all your devices."

The Chromecast device runs a simplified version of Chrome OS, and Google is working to provide the tools to developers that would allow them to have content from their apps displayed via Chromecast or through a Chrome browser interacting with a Chromecast device.

Chromecast went on sale shortly after it was announced on Wednesday. It is currently available at Amazon.com, BestBuy.com, and Google's online Play Store. On July 28, the device will be available in Best Buy's physical retail locations.

Google has taken a particularly aggressive stance with regard to the device's pricing. At $35, it is just over one-third of the price of an Apple TV device. Apple's diminutive set-top box is by far the most popular among streaming devices according to one recent measure.
post #2 of 226
"But how are they taking on Apple if they don't release a television?"

And what does this product say about Google's earlier TV options? Are they admitting that they're terrible?

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post #3 of 226
Do cheap again ? Even u get 80 % of the market share , still u can't earn more than Apple .
post #4 of 226
I bought mine. You get three months of free Netflix too.
post #5 of 226
DOA Google is doomed !
post #6 of 226

They tried this years ago and failed. In fact, there was also the Nexus Q, etc. etc. etc.

 

Remember Eric Schmidt saying the Google TV would have the market sewn up in 6 months?

post #7 of 226
This is actually one of the few hardware products that Google has come up with that interests me. Chromecast makes sense and may be marginally successful IMO.
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post #8 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by crazy_mac_lover View Post

Do cheap again ? Even u get 80 % of the market share , still u can't earn more than Apple .

 

I have to admit I don't entirely understand why many Apple customers make a virtue of the company having high profits. I mean: I like my iPad, but I would like it even better if I hadn't paid a considerable portion of its price directly into Apple's enormous pile of cash. 

 

Maybe all the people who feel this way are investors, which is a different and more obvious story. But why ordinary customers?

post #9 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gatorguy View Post

This is actually one of the few hardware products that Google has come up with that interests me. Chromecast makes sense and may be marginally successful IMO.

Seeing as the #1 reason people buy an Apple TV is for Airplay (there's a source for that -- came out in the past 2 months), I think that Chromecast will be very popular -- especially if they sell it side-by-side in-store with the Nexus's. It's a neat little device that I would buy if I had an Android device; but I think the biggest difficulty in this selling will really be the amount of products sold that support it. Giving an SDK that supports iOS is going to make it a lot more popular if developers start integrating it into their apps like they do sending links to Chrome, but that's not a given.

Bottom line though, it's a smart product that's simple, useful, and reasonably priced.

P.S. does anyone know if it has an embedded wireless card and is doing this via an ad-hoc connection, or is it Wi-DI or Bluetooth? Can you be connected to the internet and still stream, and if so does the dongle have to be hooked onto the same wifi network?
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post #10 of 226
I ordered one. After Netflix credit, it's $20. This will fit nicely with Aereo and cutting the cord.
post #11 of 226
This is a great bit of hardware. Anyone that actually bothered to do their research into what this is and what it can do will more than likely agree.
post #12 of 226

Very nice idea indeed. They are spot on with Apple being close down on features like airplay, facetime, messaging, ...  Those types of apps should always be crossplatforms. I also think Apple should open itunes on android and windows phones and tablets, unless they are scare people are retain by there investment in itunes music, movies and shows?

 

Its basicly an android airplay box.  What is funny is most TV sets already allowed to "cast" something from a lot of android phones and tablets. Problem is a lot of people with android devices dont know they can do that.

 

On the other hand, I think the next Apple TV will include gaming and apps, so it will be a different beast than this.

post #13 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by LAKings33 View Post

This is a great bit of hardware. Anyone that actually bothered to do their research into what this is and what it can do will more than likely agree.

Some won't, because it doesn't have an Apple logo. I'm practical. I can outfit all 4 tvs in my home for a little more than the cost of one Apple TV.

I am ditching my cable this fall, planned on 3 more apple tvs or maybe some roku. This changes everything.
post #14 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by Arlor View Post

 

I have to admit I don't entirely understand why many Apple customers make a virtue of the company having high profits. I mean: I like my iPad, but I would like it even better if I hadn't paid a considerable portion of its price directly into Apple's enormous pile of cash. 

 

Maybe all the people who feel this way are investors, which is a different and more obvious story. But why ordinary customers?

 

Profits fuel innovation in Cupertino.  They enable Apple to take huge risks and come up with great, revolutionary products as opposed to cheap derivatives of others' work.  Whenever Tim Cook comes on a stage to show us the next big thing, it will be born out of that considerable portion of profit from your iPad.

post #15 of 226
This device looks better than AppleTV for the simple reason that it works with both iOS and Android devices, whereas AppleTV only works on iOS devices. It seems that it would be nice if friends were able to stream stuff to your TV regardless of whether they coincidentally happened to have the same brand of device as you.

I wonder if it can stream from Mac/Windows computers?
post #16 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by Arlor View Post

I have to admit I don't entirely understand why many Apple customers make a virtue of the company having high profits. I mean: I like my iPad, but I would like it even better if I hadn't paid a considerable portion of its price directly into Apple's enormous pile of cash. 

Maybe all the people who feel this way are investors, which is a different and more obvious story. But why ordinary customers?

Who says the vocal forums members here represent "ordinary customers"?
Ordinary customers just buy their Apple products and iTunes content and are happy using it. They don't hang out here beating their chests.

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post #17 of 226

"Unlike other solutions," one said in the course of the presentation, "we will not force you to have the same operating system on all your devices."

 

That's dishonest because that's exactly what they're doing.  This thing only works with Apps that have integrated Chrome into them to support it.

 

AppleTV is not a dongle that lets you connect to the TV, it's a small computer itself. 

 

Typical google, I guess they think being disingenuous isn't "evil". 

post #18 of 226

$20 bucks after a 3 free month Netflix credit is an amazing deal. Personally I prefer my PS3 and the ability to just sit on the sofa and switch from regular TV to Netflix without an added layer of complexity by using my computer or phone to stream the content. But I can see this product selling very well. Great impulse buy and gift option. 

 

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post #19 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smiles77 View Post


P.S. does anyone know if it has an embedded wireless card and is doing this via an ad-hoc connection, or is it Wi-DI or Bluetooth? Can you be connected to the internet and still stream, and if so does the dongle have to be hooked onto the same wifi network?

 

From my understanding the dongle has an embedded WiFi card and communication happens over your home WiFI.  One of the examples given was that you can tell your phone/tablet to stream Netflix to your TV and Netflix will stream straight to the Chromecast in order to save battery life on your mobile device and leaving your mobile device to do other things if needed.

post #20 of 226
1) Chrome? Looks black to me.

2) Another attempt, ok. Hardly innovative; Apple has AirPlay for quite some time now.

3) Fitting:


http://chromecast.com

4) And then reading this, I think it's one large pathetic spec sheet they ticked off:
http://lostremote.com/google-connects-all-your-homes-devices-to-tv-with-35-chromecast_b38287

I'm sure it's successful, specifically for those that think this is 'cool' and even useful.
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post #21 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by Arlor View Post

 

I have to admit I don't entirely understand why many Apple customers make a virtue of the company having high profits. I mean: I like my iPad, but I would like it even better if I hadn't paid a considerable portion of its price directly into Apple's enormous pile of cash. 

 

Maybe all the people who feel this way are investors, which is a different and more obvious story. But why ordinary customers?

 

Funny thing is I dont think they are all investors, they just like getting rip off :p  That being said I dont like tech race to bottoms on no margins, imo companies should be allowed a decent profit for R&D and rewards for there work.

post #22 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by Durandal1707 View Post

This device looks better than AppleTV for the simple reason that it works with both iOS and Android devices, whereas AppleTV only works on iOS devices. It seems that it would be nice if friends were able to stream stuff to your TV regardless of whether they coincidentally happened to have the same brand of device as you.

I wonder if it can stream from Mac/Windows computers?

Yes, through the Chrome browser
post #23 of 226

Dont know how "great" it is, because I havent used it.  And its more limited than AppleTV, it only does Youtube/Chrome/Netflix/Certain Play Apps.  But as someone who owns Apple everything (including 4 AppleTVs).. I'm willing to give this a try.  Especially at $35 bucks.  You figure the 3 months of Netflix access make it $11 anyways.  

 

Now I just need to purchase an Android device to stream to it.  Guess I could give the new Nexus7 a try at $230.  Dont worry, I'm quite sure neither of these devices will make me stop using my Apple products.  But its always nice to take a peek at the grass on the other side.  And more competition makes the consumer a winner.  

 

If I was Apple, I wouldnt even try and compete purely on price with Google's Chromecast.  I'd simply open up Airplay and allow native audio/video streaming on ALOT more devices.  Like TV's, monitors, car navigation, displays, etc.  Considering Airplay is already built into all iOS devices & Macs.. there's already an install base in the millions.  We just need more options to use Airplay on.. than our $99 AppleTV.  Well video atleast.  Airplay audio support is already built into speakers & A/V receivers.

post #24 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by Arlor View Post

 

I have to admit I don't entirely understand why many Apple customers make a virtue of the company having high profits. I mean: I like my iPad, but I would like it even better if I hadn't paid a considerable portion of its price directly into Apple's enormous pile of cash. 

 

Maybe all the people who feel this way are investors, which is a different and more obvious story. But why ordinary customers?

 

Because you get what you pay for. 

 

Also, the sum of the parts plus the customer service is actually often amazing value due to Apple's supply chain control. So good infact that competitors find it hard to compete, selling inferior products for equal or higher price.

post #25 of 226
There goes Apple's big strategy with TV.

Or more realistic... the entire TV thing was a slight of hand to keep the competition focused on TV while Apple designs something radically different. Like robots or cars.
Siri's getting a body boys... stay tuned.
post #26 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by dillio View Post

I was actually thinking before whether Apple does, or if it does not, why it doesn't, stream directly from AppleTV when you put something on your phone on AirPlay, and you're phone streams it from the Internet anyway. Wouldn't it eliminate some lag and inefficiency? Does AppleTV do this partially at least?

 

Not it doesnt. Airplay is a nice little mess of wifi all over the place. This is why it chokes with complex games.  Imo its much to better to run the apps on the Apple TV itself.

 

But airplay fine to stream video, photos and mirror a mac for example.

post #27 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by LAKings33 View Post

This is a great bit of hardware. Anyone that actually bothered to do their research into what this is and what it can do will more than likely agree.

How is it great exactly? You can buy Blu-Ray players that can do DVDs, Blu-Ray, Netflix, Pandora, Hulu Plus, DLNA streaming and even do Facebook and Twitter for around 70 bucks. This junk is just a crippled Youtube/Netflix and music player with no other capabilities.

post #28 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by Daekwan View Post

Dont know how "great" it is, because I havent used it.  And its more limited than AppleTV, it only does Youtube/Chrome/Netflix/Certain Play Apps. 

It's also more limited than even cheap (as in around 60-70 dollars) Blu-Ray players that have more features.

 

 
Quote:
Originally Posted by herbapou View Post

 

Funny thing is I dont think they are all investors, they just like getting rip off :p  That being said I dont like tech race to bottoms on no margins, imo companies should be allowed a decent profit for R&D and rewards for there work.

Like getting ripped off? How is the AppleTV a ripoff at $100? It has tons of more features than this junky box has.

post #29 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by dillio View Post

I was actually thinking before whether Apple does, or if it does not, why it doesn't, stream directly from AppleTV when you put something on your phone on AirPlay, and you're phone streams it from the Internet anyway. Wouldn't it eliminate some lag and inefficiency? Does AppleTV do this partially at least?

It does if you don't use AirPlay: meaning if you use the AppleTV build-in apps (iTunes, YouTube etc)
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post #30 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by Daekwan View Post

Now I just need to purchase an Android device to stream to it.  

 

No, it can stream from an iOS device. At one point during their press event they even used an iPhone to demonstrate that ability. 

post #31 of 226

Bought it as soon as it was available on the "Play Store" great little hardware that works with all your current computing devices. Mirrors your chrome browser. It competes with AirPlay but not Apple TV, as AirPlay lets you stream content from your device, Chromecast streams content that's already on the public web.

 

Sold out in maybe 1-2 hours?

post #32 of 226
This actually looks very interesting - well done Google!
post #33 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeJones View Post

This junk is just a crippled Youtube/Netflix and music player with no other capabilities.

Also, don't forget to plug it into a wall outlet:



(edit: found a better pic)
Edited by PhilBoogie - 7/24/13 at 1:46pm
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post #34 of 226
Quote:

Originally Posted by Daekwan View Post

Now I just need to purchase an Android device to stream to it.  Guess I could give the new Nexus7 a try at $230.  Dont worry, I'm quite sure neither of these devices will make me stop using my Apple products.  But its always nice to take a peek at the grass on the other side.  And more competition makes the consumer a winner.  

 

 

If you have all Apple products including a Mac why not just use the free Chrome browser on OS X to stream to Chromecast? No need to buy an Android device. 


Edited by gwmac - 7/24/13 at 2:24pm

 

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post #35 of 226
Does this access the Google Play store as well? Or is this just a local streaming receiver that plugs into your TV?
post #36 of 226
I have a ps3 and a 360 but I still bought a Chromecast. I have Google play music all Access subscription and this is gonna be great to stream it through the surround system.

I also have some shows on the cloud that I can only access with my computer or my phone, and now I'll be able to stream it to the TV
post #37 of 226
Wasn't there a company that makes a Wifi to HDMI dongle called iPush that costs around $30? It was compatible with AirPlay, Miracast as well as DLNA.
post #38 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeJones View Post

How is it great exactly? You can buy Blu-Ray players that can do DVDs, Blu-Ray, Netflix, Pandora, Hulu Plus, DLNA streaming and even do Facebook and Twitter for around 70 bucks. This junk is just a crippled Youtube/Netflix and music player with no other capabilities.

Go watch the video of the press conference and you will understand what I'm getting on about.

post #39 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by rain View Post

There goes Apple's big strategy with TV.

Nice FUD.
Quote:
Originally Posted by gwmac View Post

If you have all Apple products including a Mac why not just use the free Chrome browser on OS X? 

Because Safari is better.

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post #40 of 226
Quote:
Originally Posted by MacVicta View Post

 

Profits fuel innovation in Cupertino.  They enable Apple to take huge risks and come up with great, revolutionary products as opposed to cheap derivatives of others' work.  Whenever Tim Cook comes on a stage to show us the next big thing, it will be born out of that considerable portion of profit from your iPad.

 

Well, sure, but they've accumulated $140-some billion of profits that they have NOT used for innovation, so...

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