First came Chromecast. And today, with the announcement of “Google Cast,” Google continues its proletarian crusade to make every home a connected one with cheap wireless media capability.
While Chromecast provided an affordable option to Apple TV and Roku’s media-streaming boxes with its $35 dongle that allows high definition streaming to any television with an HDMI port, the internet giant’s latest streaming concept directly takes on Apple’s AirPlay and Sonos’ wireless speaker system. The Wall Street Journal has the scoop:
‘Our objective has always been to be much more ambitious than just the Chromecast,’ said Rishi Chandra, director of product management for Google Cast. ‘We want to define a mobile first experience for how you drive your entertainment devices.’
Like with Chromecast, connecting your device to the TV or speaker system happens directly in the apps on your phone, including YouTube, Google Play, Rdio, Netflix, Songza, Hulu, Pandora, iHeart Radio and more. (Unfortunately, Spotify is still not supported.) Within one of the apps, you tap the “Cast” button, then select the Google Cast device where you want your music to play.
So unlike Airplay, you will not need both an iOS device and prohibitively expensive AirPlay speakers to take advantage of these wireless capabilities. You’ll simply need Google Cast-compatible speakers and a Wi-Fi connection. The music will stream directly from your favorite app in the background so you can continue with your regular browsing.
Sony, LG, and Denon are some of the hardware partners Google is teaming up with to produce compatible speakers with expected availability this spring.
Image by Robert Scoble, via flickr creative commons