Much like the Chromecast, Android TV devices such as the Nexus Player and Nvidia Shield TV have always had those beautiful background images as their default screensaver. However, unlike the Chromecast, these "Backdrop" images, as they're called, weren't always customizable on Android TV.
Google Chromecast is only 35 dollars. That's about 2 and a half drinks at a decent bar in Los Angeles. So, my roommates and I looked to make the investment. The small box arrived in the mail and the setup couldn't be easier. Simply, plug the Chromecast into the HDMI port on your TV and pair the two devices. Done and Done. Having the ability to stream anything on our computers or cellphones right to the TV was the main reason for getting Chromecast. Now, for streaming through the Chrome browse...
Although lots of the bigger hotel chains are lessening the restrictions they put on their room TVs, some smaller ones are still taking measures to prevent you from plugging in computers or streaming devices into an HDMI port. However, there are a few steps you can take to bypass these restrictions and watch your own media in a hotel that has restricted TVs.
The Google Cast feature that serves as the primary interface for the Chromecast and comes bundled with Android TV devices like the Nexus Player is a marvel of modern technology. But as these things go, troubleshooting issues can be difficult with something so groundbreaking, especially when you consider that there are two parts to the equation—the casting device (your phone, tablet, or computer) and the receiver.
When the Chromecast first came out about a year ago, developers were quick to find a way to root the streaming device. Google was almost as fast, however, in updating the Chromecast's firmware to close the loophole that this method used.
Screen mirroring was a long-awaited feature for the Chromecast, now available for select devices (and even more with root). While great news for those who couldn't wait to play games, watch movies, and browse pictures on a big screen, it did mean that you had to keep your device's screen on the entire time it was being mirrored.
Using a combination of my phone, laptop, and an arsenal of apps and plugins, I can send pretty much anything to my Chromecast. However, nothing is ever perfect, and the file type that was still giving me headaches were torrent and magnet files.
Amazon thinks that by simply removing an app from their Appstore, that they will stop users from accessing it. But with Android OS powering their Fire TV Stick and Fire TV, there really isn't anything they can do to prevent us from sideloading an APK onto the streaming media devices.
The new Chromecast represents an evolution of Google's smart TV dongle as well as the Android TV platform. In addition to a remote control and the ability to install apps, Chromecast with Google TV hosts the debut of Google's innovative Google TV interface, which will eventually make its way to Android TV.
I loved the original Star Wars trilogy when I was a kid, but loathe all of the current DVD, Blu-ray, and streaming versions available today. Ever since 1997, every version of A New Hope, The Empire Strikes Back, and Return of the Jedi has had horrendous CGI effects added in that George Lucas deemed necessary to bring his "ideal" version to life.
This tutorial is for everyone who has been waiting for a solution to stream web videos to a Chromecast by using an iPhone or iPad. It is easy as a cakewalk.
Televisions used to be great for just one thing—watching TV. But a more connected world brought with it Smart TVs, devices that can access the web, stream Netflix, and even mirror your smartphone's display. And with this level of connectivity, OEMs like Samsung saw it fit to place targeted and interactive ads on your screen.
You can't always have your media on the same network as your Chromecast. Say you're at a friend's house or even out of town—it sure would be nice to cast your videos when you're out and about, wouldn't it?
With the development kit fully open, the functionality of our Chromecasts seem to expand with each passing day. From a portable gaming system to your own personalized news station, our little gadgets have a lot going for them.
It's a breeze to send videos and music from your phone straight to your TV with an Apple TV or Chromecast, but these devices don't support all file types. While MP4 videos and MP3 music files are the norm these days, I still have a ton of AVI and FLV files that I'd like to watch on a big screen.
As the Chromecast becomes more and more popular (it's even available overseas now), the market has seen an avalanche of Chromecast-compatible apps. We can play games, cast TV stations, and even mirror our screens, but today I'm going to show you a multifaceted tool that'll do everything from broadcasting your camera to displaying your documents.
Google has opened up their Beta version of the Google Cast extension for the Chromecast. If you don't know, you can cast tabs from a Chrome browser to your Chromecast connected display. Today, they've released the beta version of the extension to the public, and you can grab it right now.
If you're a U.S. expat living, traveling, or studying abroad, or just someone who typically uses virtual private networks (VPNs) in order to access the North American video libraries of services like Hulu or Netflix, you were probably surprised to see that these video streaming services don't work on your Chromecast or Chromecast 2.
With its growing popularity, it's clear that the Chromecast isn't going away anytime soon, with options for casting games, cloud files, music, and much more. But not all content providers are in a hurry to add support for the device, and SoundCloud is one of them. While My Cloud Player is by no means an official SoundCloud app, it comes pretty darn close.
Recently, Google unleashed the Chromecast development kit, which lets developers add Chromecast streaming functionality to their own apps. However, there aren't many apps with Chromecast capabilities yet, and big companies and devs are still working on polishing their final products.
The biggest problem with Netflix (which is hardly a real problem) is the overwhelming amount of content available for streaming. Browsing through profile-specific categories might help narrow down your search on something to watch, but some of those categories come and go without warning, and it's impossible to find them again—but not anymore.
The Nexus Player is one of the most robust set-top streaming devices on the market. This is mainly due to the fact that the base software it runs is a direct fork of Android, which is a very powerful operating system itself.
One of the best things I love most about any new gaming console are the apps—I can switch from playing Assassin's Creed III to re-watching the fifth season of Breaking Bad on Netflix without ever getting off the couch. Beat that Atari.
The Fire TV Stick, as well as the Fire TV, may be limited by Amazon's fight on piracy, but after a quick sideloading of Kodi, the floodgates are back open with the freedom to stream just about any video or song you want.
Sling TV, the new over-the-top TV streaming service from DISH Network, is the first to offer live programing for cord cutters. Available for $20 a month with no contract, Sling TV is the easiest way to end the reliance on cable and satellite subscriptions for getting your content as it airs.
Popcorn Time is an app that streams movies directly from torrents on to your computer, and it's seen its fair share of publicity, being lauded as a free Netflix alternative and chastised as an illegal file-sharing network.
Chromecast is so small and portable that it would seem to be a perfect device for making PowerPoint presentations. But even now that you can mirror your Android device's display, there are still a few issues.
Arguably Chromecast's biggest feature since its launch, screen mirroring functionality started rolling out to select devices earlier this week, and in a word, it's awesome.
Podcasts have been around and popular for close to a decade now. For the uninitiated, podcasts are like radio shows that can be downloaded directly from the web and listened to on any device. Up until now, only paid apps allowed podcasts to be casted via Chromecast, but with the latest update to Xavier Guillemane's Podcast Addict, you can now do the same thing for free!
You suck at karaoke. Most of us do, but that doesn't stop any of us from hitting up the karaoke bar. It's not about who sounds best; there's American Idol for that. It's about having a great time without incurring negative judgement; the worse you are the better time I'm having.
Netflix was my proverbial gateway drug to cord-cutting, as I'm sure it was for many others. Yet as much as I truly love Netflix and its service, there are some annoyances I have with the interface of the desktop web version.
UPDATE NOVEMBER 2015: The root process has changed for the Nexus Player now that the device is running Android 6.0 Marhsmallow. I've updated this article with detailed instructions on the new root process, but the video below still depicts the old process for Android Lollipop.
Amazon's Fire TV set-top box has been out for over a month now, and the hacks are starting to come together. Sure you can play your Amazon Instant Video, Hulu, and Netflix content without any issue, but what about your personal media, like movies and music?
If you were around when the Nintendo Wii first launched, you remember how revolutionary the device was at the time. When I first encountered one, I was amazed at the simplicity of its controls, namely the fact that the Wii Remote (aka Wiimote) just felt like such a natural way to play a game.
A security analyst has discovered a flaw in Chromecast's initial setup process that allows would-be hackers to assume full control over the online streaming device.
Is social media ready to make the jump to the big screen? The developers behind the Android app Stevie think so.
Apple likes to make their products simple. However, sometimes that simplicity leads to a confusing user-experience. Take the Apple TV, for example. How do you turn it off? Just press the power button, right? Sorry, there is no power button. Okay, so it's like an iPhone and has a nondescript button designated as a power button, right? Nope.
Cord cutters are changing everything about TV—the more of us that sever ties with cable, the more changes we start to see. In fact, viewing habits have already changed so drastically that waiting a week to see the next episode in a series is no longer acceptable, as binge watching has completely eclipsed this old-fashioned format.
Since the Nexus Player is an Android device at heart, there are already several internet browsers that can be used on the streaming set-top box. Chrome, Firefox, and a few others will run perfectly fine, but the trouble with these is that you need a mouse to use them.
At its core, the Chromecast is essentially a web browser on a stick. When you cast content from your computer or smartphone, all you're really doing is telling the Chromecast which website to load.