We have a feeling that many people will wake up Christmas morning and find Google's Chromecast in their stocking – a must have gift for only $35, provided you have an HDTV – heck, maybe if you were real good, that will be one of your gifts as well! If you haven't ordered one from the Google Play Store yet, you may want to give Verizon a whirl – they have it for the same price, $34.99, but if you get any kind of corporate discount on accessories, you can actually purchase it cheaper than through the Play Store website. Without any fanfare, it appeared on the Verizon website a couple days ago and was brought to Droid Life's attention by a reader.
Back in July, Google introduced us to a little dongle called Chromecast – an innocent enough looking device with a price tag of only $35. It sold out in a matter of hours, especially since it was offering 3 months of Netflix downloads for free, even for existing customers (like myself), so it was a no-brainer – buy Chromecast for $35 and save $25 on Netflix – so for only $10 I got my Chromecast. It is very easy to hook up as all you do is plug it into your HDMI outlet on your HDTV, add power via an USB port, and follow the instructions on the screen to begin casting anything in your Chrome browser, on your smartphone, laptop, or tablet. It is so popular that it has taken over the number one seller on Amazon, pushing the Kindle Paperwhite from the top spot! The specifications for those interested:
- Weight: 34 grams
- Dimensions: 72 x 35 x 12 mm
- Connectivity: Wi-Fi
- Power source: From TV's USB port or wall outlet
- Output: HDMI, CEC (Consumer Electronics Control) compatible
- Maximum output video resolution: 1080p
- Wireless Standards: 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi (802.11n 2.4GHz only)
- Wireless Security: WEP, WPA/WPA2
And you get everything you need to hook it up:
- USB power cable
- Power adapter
- HDMI extender
It also includes several apps built right into the menu, such as Netflix, YouTube, Hulu Plus, Pandora, Play Movies, Play Music, and recently added HBO GO (it is continually growing). Not exactly sure why Verizon jumped on the Chromecast bandwagon, but it is a great device and for $35 or less, you simply cannot go wrong with this purchase. It is so convenient to cast screens from you laptop or mobile device up on the big screen. Most Smart TV's, like Samsung and LG, already have these apps available, but being able to search faster for a YouTube video on your laptop or to watch something else cast from your Chrome browser makes it a worthwhile addition to your dongles…one can never have too many dongles.
Let us know in the comments or on Google+ if you either use Chromecast or are planning on purchasing one.