You know when you invite a girl over to eat some of Mom’s spaghetti but it turns out she just wants to Netflix and chill? As she makes her way to your TV you remember that you don’t have a smart TV or any kind of system that runs Netflix. You get so flustered that your knees get weak and your arms are heavy, there’s vomit on your sweater already- Mom’s spaghetti. But you’re determined to save the night and not look like a fool. This is when you remember that you have a Google Chromecast. All of your problems can be solved with this little $35 device.
You confidently cast Netfix from your phone to your TV, where she sees that your watch history is all My Little Pony shows and she promptly leaves. But that’s ok because you can spend the rest of your night browsing the internet with Chrome on your TV. In fact, let’s take a look at all the features that you can take advantage of when you get a Chromecast.
Chromecast is an Android powered device that can be use to cast content over your network. While the term “Cast” is similar to “Stream”, it’s evolved to mean something a little different. Streaming would be sending the video and audio from your device to the receiver on the TV. Casting is telling the chromecast to use it’s own internet connection to pull the same content that you’re viewing on the phone. This technology results in having no impact on the battery or resources of your device. So what kind of stuff can you cast to your TV?
Definitely not something I ever want to be broadcast to a big screen TV in from of a bunch of people, but the option is there if you’re interested in living on the edge. Your photos can be cast to your TV in a maximum of a 1080p resolution. You can do this using the Google Photos app. Just look for this icon in the corner of your screen. Go ahead, show those pictures you took of yourself in your mom’s dress. You look great.
When you purchase a video through the Play store, it will be available to cast right to your chromecast. The chromecast device may be small (like me) but it can stream 1080p videos effortlessly.
“Chromecast keeps video resolution high and buffering low with 2.4/5GHz WiFi support and a built-in adaptive antenna system. And because your content is streamed straight from the cloud, your movies and TV shows play without interruption, even if you and your phone leave the room.”
This is probably the feature that you’ll be using the most. You can cast any YouTube video to your TV. Anyone who is on your WiFi network will see the cast icon on their YouTube app. You can start a playlist with multiple people, so if you’re binge watching home birth videos everyone can add their favorite to the queue and they will be played in the order that they were added.
I think that this feature alone justifies buying one of these little devices.
When you buy a Chromecast you’re usually treated to one month of free Play Music. Chances are that your TV is hooked up to your favorite sound system. So you might as well take advantage of that by turning it into your music center. You can pause, play or skip through the songs from your phone. This doesn’t cause any sort of drain on your battery life because the Chromecast is actually pulling the data from your google account, not from your phone. But you knew that because I already mentioned it. Pay attention!!
Similar to the YouTube feature, the music can be controlled by anyone who is on your home network. Just look for the cast icon to start playing music.
This feature can be used from your phone or your computer. You are able to cast the content from your chrome web browser to your chromecast. There is a simple chrome extension that you’ll install on your computer the enable this feature.
That’s about all there is for stock Android features for the chromecast. There are many other third party apps and mods that we will go over in another articles. You’ll become a better person if you invest in a Google Chromecast. If it sounds like something you’re interested in, you pick pick one up at the Google Store.Buy a Chromecast