Ever since the release of the Chromecast from Google, there have been numerous companies trying to come out with their own offering of a self proclaimed Chromecast killer, aka their own media streaming HDMI dongle that had something better to offer than Google’s $35 media stick. While some arguably have a few more features, they also cost close to double the price while some are only a little more expensive but more or less have the same features. Enter Qualcomm’s offering, which is really just a reference design for other companies to use at this point. Regardless of how you feel about the Chromecast competition, or about which media dongle is the right choice for you, Qualcomm is stepping up to the plate to make an attempt at providing a media dongle of their own for others to build off of that may just be compelling enough to draw attention away from Google’s device.
This Qualcomm streaming stick is being referred to as the Qualcomm 4K sdtreaming adapter, and in case it wasn’t evident by the terminology, it streams 4K video content to your TV. It’s also powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon chipset,(who would have guessed)and is essentially the power of an actual android device. It’s powered by a Snapdragon 800 processor, so the same chip that we saw inside of the LG G2, running inside of a streaming stick.
What’s really the most impressive detail(or rather details) here is that the 4K streaming adapter is said to have support for multiple wireless radios, including WiFi and LTE-U which is essentially an LTE band separate from a carrier’s 4G LTE frequencies. As the Chromecast only works over WiFi, it can be a little limiting. Qualcomm’s reference design would give users the opportunity to stream content over LTE. There’s also the possibility that it could end up with a Snapdragon 810 inside once it’s ready to hit shelves, although since this is a reference design we suppose that depends entirely on the manufacturer that may choose to pick this up and run with it. If in fact Qualcomm’s 4K streaming adapter gets picked up by OEMs and we actually see the product make it into consumer households, depending on the price it could be a very strong competitor to Chromecast. A Chromecast killer? We’re not entirely sure yet since the device isn’t even out, so it’s a little early we feel to be throwing around such terms, but based on what we’re hearing already, this is one device to look out for that could potentially have much to offer that the Chromecast does not. It could also be heavy competition for Amazon’s Fire TV Stick, the Roku 3500R, and even the Matchstick once it releases.