Thursday, October 17, 2013

ChromeCast is almost Magic

First a big shout out to Uncle Ronny, without whom my 2 new Google ChromeCast keys would not have been delivered from America to Switzerland.    Thanks!

[ Clearly any Google Hardware from phones to ChromeCast keys are far too modern for the Swiss and so Google makes no attempt to directly sell any hardware here (sic) ]

  • Chromecast is a small hardware device that typically plugs into your TV's HDMI socket.  We plugged ours into our [old, but faithful] Samsung TV.
  • Actually it will plug into any display that has a HDMI input socket
  • You Install the Chrome Browser, or perhaps if you are a smart Bear, you already use Chrome as your primary browser

  • You install a Google Cast Extension into your browser

  • You use a portable computer  (in my case my humble Samsung Chromebook)
  • You browse to this setup URL
  • You make sure your portable is on the same wireless network as you will attach your chromecast key to
  • Following onscreen instructions you will enter the wifi password that your portable/ Chromecast is going to attach to.  [We have several household WiFi networks.  We made our choice based on coverage and security]
  • In our case once the ChromeCast key found the Internet it upgraded its own firmware

And that was that.

SO, What does it do?

Once setup; any selected tab of my Chrome Browser is magically shown on the TV.

  1. I can now effortlessly use the large Samsung TV as an Internet Browser via the Chrome browser on my laptop!
  2. So the fact that some idiot designed my TV with no keyboard is at last no longer an issue!
  3. I can load a YouTube video on my laptop and then display it on the TV.  Fantastic!
  4. In fact, any streaming media, or (to repeat) anything inside the Chrome browser can display on the TV.
  5. We bought 2 keys, so we still have a spare!  Maybe plug it into a shortly to be spare monitor [with HDMI imput] , and install it in the bedroom.  Then I can stream from Chromebook in bed to that monitor, wirelessly :-)

ChromeCast ... It is so simple and yet so brilliant.

Thanks Google.

Chromecast UK