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1,699 of 1,784 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Chromecast: What it is, what it does well, what it doesn't do well, and what it doesn't do at all
Update34: Firefox browser for android adds chromecast support.

Update33: Tesco adds UV support to its cast ready Blinkbox movie service.

Update32: Choose your own content for the screensaver, via the new "Backdrop" feature in the chromecast app.

Update31: New offer of free 3 month NOW TV Entertainment Pass worth £21.

Update30:...
Published 6 months ago by Michael_G

versus
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
good
Published 3 months ago by Mrs SLA Bedrossian


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1,699 of 1,784 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Chromecast: What it is, what it does well, what it doesn't do well, and what it doesn't do at all, 27 Mar 2014
This review is from: Google Chromecast HDMI Streaming Media Player (Personal Computers)
Update34: Firefox browser for android adds chromecast support.

Update33: Tesco adds UV support to its cast ready Blinkbox movie service.

Update32: Choose your own content for the screensaver, via the new "Backdrop" feature in the chromecast app.

Update31: New offer of free 3 month NOW TV Entertainment Pass worth £21.

Update30: Amazon Video adds support for android phones on Sept 10th, enabling mirroring to chromecast from a supported device.

[After 29 updates, and much time spent on answering questions and clarifying misunderstandings, I really wasn't going to spend any more time on chromecast. Especially when some people objected to being straightened out. However, I'll make an exception for the announcement from Amazon that they've added support on android phones. With a newer phone supporting official android mirroring, this means that Amazon Video can now be sent to chromecast. Looks pretty good on my setup, but phone, CC, router, and TV are all close. It's also just been announced that in addition to the Google Play Music offer, there's a free Now TV pass worth £21.]

But back to the much abbreviated review.

Some folks prefer to live in an alternative universe when it comes to Chromecast.

Just some recent complaints in reviews:

It needs internet. It needs power. It doesn't stream audio. It doesn't support Airplay. It doesn't work on Fire OS. It only works with Google apps. Google knows what you watch. It's not as good as the £99 box I've already got. It only does what my smart TV does. It doesn't work in a different country. I don't know what it's supposed to do, but I know I don't like it. It doesn't mow the lawn.

(I made that last one up).

If I've robustly commented and offended anyone, I'm sorry.

I set out clearly what it did, what it didn't do, and answered many questions.

You can help all of the people some of the time. You can help some of the people all of the time.

But sadly, you can't help all of the people all of the time.
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776 of 815 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Selling Media Streaming Dongle ....... Here's why, 19 Mar 2014
By 
Antoine Camilleri - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 10 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Google Chromecast HDMI Streaming Media Player (Personal Computers)
I have shortened this review in order to leave space for other reviewers to voice their opinion.

After numerous unsuccessful attempts to penetrate the HDMI dongle streaming market, Google finally nailed it ..... and the competition for that matter.
The fact that the Chromecast has taken Europe by storm, becoming a best seller in under a month speaks for itself!

Many simply cannot afford or justify upgrading to a new Smart TV. Others might be fed up with wires associated with set top boxes and just want to view online media. This £30 dongle will do the job in style. And the good news does not end there.... It is very cheap, sticks to the back of your TV and can be controlled via a myriad of devices.

Very true, the market is flooded with HDMI dongles, yet the Chromecast is the clear winner and a best seller thanks to "Heavy weight" Online Media companies embracing it into their apps. Since releasing the SDK (Software Development Kit) in February 2014, many app developers are hopping aboard the Chromecast wagon, in the hopes of getting a slice of the market. Terrific news for the Chromecast owners!

Pros:
○ Does what it promises on the tin ...
○ Converts your conventional TV to a Smart TV
○ Package comes bundled with everything you could possibly need to get you up and running in no time (including a UK mains adapter)
○ *Automatically switches on your TV and tunes to the CC channel when media is routed to it. *USB must be powered from mains adapter and not from TV itself
○ Provides seamless streaming of high definition web media such as Youtube, Vimeo, Netflix, Vevo, Realplayer Cloud, BBC iPlayer (for UK only), Google Play movies, and more (depending on country)
○ Cross platform compatibility (Windows/Android/Mac/iOS Computers, Tablets and Smartphones)
○ Can be controlled via your smartphone rather than a dedicated wireless keyboard, which would probably cost as much as this device itself
○ Tiny and portable. Great for taking to a friends or family house to share media on the big screen
○ Negligible power consumption. Plug and forget. Uses no bandwidth when on standby (except for the occasional firmware upgrade)
○ Maximum Stealth. Plug and forget.
○ Unbeatable Value

Limitations:
- Single band Wi-Fi antenna operating on 2.4Ghz (802.11b/g/n). The inclusion of the 5GHz band would have been welcome, albeit few phones support it.
- Amazon LOVEFiLM subscribers will find that they cannot view their movies. This is not a limitation of the Chromecast itself ........ Amazon has launched its own Amazon Fire TV in the US (2nd April), so it is highly unlikely to ever see CC support. Yet never say never... as mentioned before.

Current limitations:
- Windows 8 /8.1 phones limited support. Tubecast partially addresses streaming of youtube videos
- Streaming of local media stored from certain devices .... Update :Being addressed by Plex, BubbleUPnP, Allcast among others.
- Mirroring of the Google browser screen is still in Beta version. UPDATE: Much faster now

----------------------------------
THE CHROMECAST (In a few words) :
----------------------------------
The CC is a 3inch dongle which plugs into an HDMI port on an HD TV or a/v equipment and is powered via the provided USB cable (a mains adapter is also included just in case the TV lacks a USB port). Once set up it automatically connects to the internet. It provides seamless streaming of many "popular" web media services. The Chromecast can be controlled via smartphones, Android & iOS devices and desktop computers. No need for some clunky remote controller!

* As Trustedreviews website rightfully pointed out.... QUOTE "Google Chromecast does not come with a remote control at all. Instead, you use a phone or tablet to act as the middle man between streaming services like Netflix and your TV." UNQUOTE.

What it does best is what it was designed to do: streaming of media stored on the web.

---------------------
INSTALLATION & SETUP:
---------------------
Locate a free HDMI port on your TV (or a/v equipment). You might find that there is not enough room to plug the device due to its relatively thick base. The included extension interface is narrow enough to fit next to existing occupied HDMI ports, and the Chromecast will snugly fit over it. The next step powering the device. If you do not have a USB port on your TV, or are using it for a keyboard (you won't need it any longer most probably), a mains adapter is included in the package. The micro USB power supply needs to be connected to the device itself. The unit will spring to life, indicated by a flashing LED light on the unit itself.

Setting up the CC is very easy and straight forward, An app named "Chromecast", available for iOS and Android will aid you in configuring password settings for your home Wi-Fi. The Chromecast will then automatically log on to the internet and remain connected. That's it!

---------------
HOW IT WORKS:
--------------
When viewing online media, the Chromecast will use your broadband connection directly, and not hop the signal through the device you chose to stream from. The controlling device is just a remote control. This is particularly handy when using a smartphone. There is no battery drain on the phone and it can be used as a keyboard whilst still being able to function as a phone.

However if you chose to stream local media (ie stored on a phone or computer) things get a bit more complex. Yet to be fair, the CC was not designed to handle such content.

The following apps have varying degrees of success in streaming local media:
"Plex" works on any platform and is free
"BubbleUPnP" (Chromecast/DLNA)- Android phones and tablets
"EZCast" app has partially addressed seamless streaming of media stored on iOS/Android devices.
"PlayOn" Paid subscription is required, yet it comes with a 30 day money back guarantee.

-----------
CONCLUSION:
-----------
I personally consider this device the best, unobtrusive, cost effective solution for steaming web media on your TV. Yet that is only my humble opinion.... Check out PC Advisor and TechAdvisor "Best free apps for Chromecast you don't know about" for some cool apps. There's no denying that this tiny device does what it was designed to to really well.

Highly recommend, especially to those who do not have a Smart TV, Apple TV or a Roku box.

I hope you find this review helpful. Please feel free to comment or ask any questions :)
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251 of 270 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Easy Peasy TV upgrade, 8 April 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Google Chromecast HDMI Streaming Media Player (Personal Computers)
So easy to set up!
Open box, remove dongle and power cable (there's a flexible HDMI adaptor in there too if you need the dongle to sit flush with the TV, if you're TV is wall mounted for example) plug dongle into HDMI inlet, power cable into USB port (or plug into mains adaptor if you don't have a USB on your TV - also supplied) connect power lead to dongle, then open your Chromecast app (I'm using the iOS version) It then locates your device, you confirm your network password and bosh!
That's it! Good to go...
You get a wonderful crisp 1080p picture, (I have experienced no buffering issues so far either - and that's on a measly 3 Mbps connection, so much better than is the norm on my YouView box :-$)
You've got UK support for YouTube, Netflix, BBC iPlayer, BT Sport (!) Vevo and some others too, which will work from their native apps on your phone/tablet similar to AirPlay.
In addition, if you use Chrome as your browser on your PC/laptop then unsurprisingly there is a free browser extension available from which you can beam your browser screen to your TV screen, which effectively gives you access to all of the other players available or pretty much anything else you wish to view.
Purchased as a cheap alternative to the AppleTV on our main TV, this works just as well on a technical level and the browser extension gives me potentially just as much content.
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428 of 473 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant but..., 23 Mar 2014
By 
Richard H (Peterborough, UK) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Google Chromecast HDMI Streaming Media Player (Personal Computers)
Superb device, and so cheap. Works brilliantly. An absolute must buy. But... Pathetic Amazon won't allow the tab browsing function of desktop Chrome to sream Lovefilm videos to Chromecast. Absolutely fed up with Amazon and their petty refusal to work with Google, especially as the whole Kindle operating system is a knocked down version of Google's own Android OS. As well as refusing to allow me to access my Lovefilm account on any Android device, this latest petty stance from Amazon makes me mad. Closing Lovefilm account and getting rid of any Kindle software and devices. Had enough. Sort your politics out!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars perfect for mlb tv, 19 May 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Google Chromecast HDMI Streaming Media Player (Personal Computers)
bought this to watch mlb.tv and it works a treat,could do with more supporting apps to get 5 stars and not 4 stars
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gobsmackingly Brilliant. Works really well!, 18 Oct 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Google Chromecast HDMI Streaming Media Player (Personal Computers)
I had my doubts about this but bought one for my neighbour (early Christmas present) and... "what the heck, only 30 quid"... one for myself.

I am gobsmacked how well this works. Plugged it into my TV HDMI socket, then power from a nearby socket (my TV has no USB port, which can be used to supply power ......No power on HDMI? What an oversight!...), switched TV input to that HDMI input and there was my Chromecast, ready to connect to the Internet and update itself (controlled using Chromecast app downloaded to my laptop).

After a couple of minutes, I was selecting a programme to watch on BBC iPlayer on my Android tablet, pressing the iPlayer "cast" button, and watching my programme (in pretty good HD) on my TV!

I also tried YouTube and we had great fun selecting old Top of the Pops clips on the tablet and casting them to the TV.

ITV, Channel 4 and 5 are not supporting this device. Sky are thinking about it. Well I think they will all have to think very carefully about this as this device is a huge winner and they will be the losers. Well done Auntie Beeb for having the foresight to support Chromecast which I LOVE. I am perfectly happy with all my BBC programmes (though no radio) as well as the odd YouTube video. Yah, boo, sucks to the other broadcasters!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just what BT Sport and PLEX needs, 10 April 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Google Chromecast HDMI Streaming Media Player (Personal Computers)
For those of us who up to now have only been able to access BT Sport via a tablet or laptop, this is the solution to displaying it on a flat screen tv without using an HDMI cable. The BT Sport app now has a Chromecast 'button' which tells the Chromecast adaptor (plugged into a spare HDMI port on the tv) to use its own 'built-in' BT Sport app to start decoding the stream directly. This means the quality of the stream is maintained and the tablet or laptop can be turned off or used for something else. The only other thing that is required is a power feed - a mains adaptor and cable are supplied but if your tv has a spare usb port you may be able to use this instead. My LG tv has 3 usb ports very close to its HDMI ports and I purchased a short usb to micro usb adaptor cable for a very neat installation.

For those of you who have a PLEX media sharing setup I recommend this as a means of getting PLEX on your TV if it hasn't got PLEX 'built-in' (like my LG) or as an alternative to using DNLA. If you aren't using PLEX I recommend having a look at plex.tv. Its the best all round solution to keeping all that media under control!
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39 of 44 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wireless HDMI Cable, 18 April 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Google Chromecast HDMI Streaming Media Player (Personal Computers)
Got this connected to a 42" TV with My iPad as the controller! Allows the ipad to multitask by playing Netflix on Chromecast and allows me to browse the internet on the ipad as well as control the Netflix App
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cheap alternative to a Smart TV, 29 May 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Google Chromecast HDMI Streaming Media Player (Personal Computers)
I bought this product for my daughters room as an alternative to DVD's. My daughter changes her mind on the DVD she would like to watch every two minutes so I loaded all her DVD's onto the computer and used the Plex app on my phone to stream them from the computer to the Chromecast in her room.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent value, some issues but plenty of workarounds - use with plex for best results, 28 July 2014
By 
Brains (UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Google Chromecast HDMI Streaming Media Player (Personal Computers)
I'll add my voice to the thousands of others here and say this is an awesome product when combined with a Plex media server. It streams HD content effectively 99% of the time, we have had a few issues with movies freezing in Plex, but this may have been due to other wifi networks clashing on channels - there are a lot nearby - or interference from the microwave or a configuration/processor issue on the Plex server. We have only had this issue once in 6 weeks.

The flexibility of being able to play all your media from one place is unprecedented, especially if you have your TV hooked up to a good sound system for music. The Chromecast can be controlled from both IOS and android devices from anywhere in the house, which is great when the kids want to watch something and I'm not in the room - I can stay in bed in the morning and send them down to the lounge to watch peppa pig without having to get up/dressed etc.(lazy parenting tip) However - note that currently, the android version of plex doesn't provide the ability to queue up or play whole series. In IOS this is achieved with a long press. The only other problem with plex is sometimes it is necessary to stop and resume the film if the portable device was switched off or lost it's connection with the Chromecast, a minor niggle.

It works effectively enough with the other streaming channels such as BBC iPlayer and again can be controlled from a tablet/smartphone.

I have not managed to get it to stream well from the google chrome browser. I don't know what the issue is, I have a fast PC and reasonable wifi speeds. The TV is in the same room as the WIFI router, but the videos are choppy and unwatchable. I could not find any advice that fixed this so gave up in the end. If you install plex, you won't need to stream media that way anyway. (But you will need either a smartphone/tablet or a wifi dongle so the plex server on your PC can see the chromecast dongle directly)

There have been a couple of issues where one of us has been watching something and another person has taken over the Chromecast - there is no warning on the controlling device if something is already being streamed, so it can cause arguments, or be weaponised with justin bieber.

Lastly, there are a couple of emerging games in the google play store, these are very basic at the moment but demonstrate some potential for future releases.
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