Last week Google launched a new product called Chromecast. It’s a thumb-size unit that looks like a jump drive. It plugs into your television, and using your Wi-Fi network, connects it to the Internet. That means you can watch movies and listen to music located on your phone, tablet, or the internet, onto your TV. Want to display a business presentation or internet information at your next meeting? You no longer need to worry about special cables or projectors – just plug your Chromecast into a TV and run it from your phone or tablet!
Why is that such a big deal? Everywhere you go, you can have your stuff, on any screen – doesn’t matter if it’s “smart”, dumb, big, or small. And you can use your phone or mouse instead of a remote. I think it’s one of the smartest moves that Google has made in some time.
Chromecast shows us that in the future, screens will be screens, nothing more. A few years from now, I think the mighty display could be decoupled entirely from computer processing. As mobile devices get more powerful, we may all simply carry processors with us and “cast” onto screens when we want to work on a desktop or watch TV.
Chromecast currently only works with four streaming services– Netflix, Pandora, YouTube and Google Play. It also lets you stream whatever is open in a Chrome browser. That’s actually a lot and you can be sure that more is coming. Also, your TV needs to have an HDMI port. Most TV’s do, but if your’s is especially old, check first.
Oh yes, and I forgot to mention that you can have your own Chromecast for only $35! They are available online and in stores – Amazon, Best Buy, Newegg and more. Be advised that they are sold out at most places and you will likely have to go on a waiting list.