Google Chromecast hits Europe, Canada with a new way to watch TV

Mar 19, 2014 by Tupac Pointu
The new Google Chromecast is arranged on a table at a media event at Dogpatch Studios on July 24, 2013 in San Francisco, California

Gone are the days of squinting at your smartphone as you try to make out what is happening in your favourite film.

On Wednesday, eight months after the American release, Google launched its latest innovation—Chromecast—in Europe and Canada, a small the size of a finger which allows you to transfer online video content from a mobile device onto an HD .

According to the Internet giant, the device has done well in the US, with "millions" sold to date, although it has not revealed a precise figure.

Wednesday saw the device released in ten European countries—Germany, Denmark, France, Spain, Finland, Italy, Norway, the Netherlands, Sweden and Britain—as well as in Canada. Google is also now opening up the platform to developers, with 3,000 already signed up to create content.

The Chromecast device plugs into a television through an HDMI port, then communicates with a smartphone, tablet, or laptop over the wifi network.

Click the small icon, and you can send videos from your mobile device to your television, or use your smartphone as a remote control.

The device means consumers will be able to watch everything from cat videos on YouTube to feature films on Netflix. Content will also vary by country. In the UK, viewers can use the device to watch programmes from the BBC, in France, they can use it for FranceTV Pluzz and SFR TV.

While there have been other devices to connect televisions to before, such as Apple's Air Play, Google is betting that the simplicity of its device, its size, and price—it sells for 35 euros ($49) will win over the market.

It is also proud of the way Chromecast allows users to "multitask"—it is possible to send mails and use other applications while watching television.

"Chromecast is the easiest way to bring your favorite online movies, shows, music and more to the TV screen," said Mario Queiroz, director of product management at Google. "It should be easy for people to watch the they want wherever they are."

According to rumours, online shopping giant Amazon will also release its own television-smartphone interface next month.

Pascal Lechevallier, the founder of What's Hot, a consultancy which specialises in new media, said the device was a great way for multi-channel networks on YouTube to be watched on the home's main television.

"History is changing, and the video offering online is going to become even larger," he predicted, stressing the importance, in time, for Google to capitalise on video ads as they are screened on television.

Explore further: Roku gets into streaming-stick fight with Google

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Review: Chromecast streams media at a nice price

Jul 31, 2013

A new device from Google makes it easy to stream video from several popular services to a high-definition TV. Chromecast is tiny enough to dangle from a keychain when not in use, but it packs a big punch ...

TiVo founders try to reprogram Internet video

Feb 25, 2014

(AP)—The founders of DVR pioneer TiVo are shifting their focus from broadcast TV to broadband Internet as they introduce a new device designed to make it easier for people to find and manage video.

Recommended for you

GoGlove wearable aims to control life's soundtracks

Nov 26, 2014

Technology creatives are seeing the key attraction in wearables as being in solutions that save the user from fumbling around with the phone to make app adjustments or changes, or from repeatedly taking it ...

Amazon cuts Fire phone price to ignite sales

Nov 26, 2014

Amazon on Wednesday slashed the price of Fire mobile phones that stalled after launch early this year, becoming a drag on the US online retail titan's bottom line.

Tech review: Another year, another iPad

Nov 25, 2014

Some years, Apple introduces a new version of a product and the world rejoices. Other years, the updates are more under the hood, but they still sell a ton.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.