Chromecast Backdrop Now Available

Ever wonder how you can customize the background on your Chromecast idle or wait screen? Well now you have an option through Chromecast Backdrop. Backdrop allows you to customize the photos while you are not casting. You will also have the ability to share photos from your G+ album. You can also set up weather forecast based off your location.

First, you go into Chromecast app on your phone or pc. You will notice the Backdrop menu available. You have several options under Backdrop Preferences. You can select to show photos from your Google+ account, display weather, art, and other options. Once you set your preferences, you will get a ‘Chromecast is personalized’ message and you are set!

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Google Expands List of Supported Devices for Screen Mirroring

Google has expanded devices which support screen mirroring to your Chromecast device. This will allow you to screen any app from your Android device to the TV. In addition to all Nexus devices, Samsung Galaxy, and now Sony Xperia Z3, Z2, and Z2 tablet.

However, this will not send any audio so it will be limitedto visuals only. Give it a try, it is pretty neat.

chromecast screen mirroring

(Source Google Support)

Amazon Fire TV Stick goes headon with Chromecast

Amazon has finally began its pre-order much anticipated Fire TV Stick which will go head on against Chromecast. The price is for $39 and will be expected to be shipped Nov. 19th. There is a disclaimer on it’s website indicating that if you order today, it will arrive AFTER January 15, 2015 so it won’t make it in time for Christmas which is a major disappointment. Not suprisingly, it touts better hardware than Chromecast considering it is released a whole year after Chromecast. One major advantage over Chromecast is that you can finally stream Amazon Prime movies, TV shows, games , and music. On the downside, this will tie you in more with your Prime account making you more dependent on it.

Some other vital details:

  • 4 times the storage and 2 times the memory of Chromecast including dual-core processor and one GB of memory
  • Over 200,000 TV shows, several million songs, games, and movies.
  • Instant streaming with ASAP. Obvious knock on Chromecast as it takes several seconds to cast your content to your TV.
  • A TV remote for your Fire TV stick. This feature was received with mixed feedback. Some people don’t want to deal with another remote and there is no word if there will be a remote dedicated on the app like the Chromecast.
  • App not available for iOS! Only Android available at the time of launch. With the use of the App, you will be able to use voice search.
  • Stream personal photos and videos through your amazon cloud drive.

Setup is similar to Chromecast. If you look at the first icon, it looks like it will be powered via the same manner as the Chromecast. Will there be overheating issues? I’m not sure. We will see when we get the device!

 

 

Chromecast adds new content with Disney, Twitch, iheartradio, and Dramafever!

Chromecast is the Christmas gift that keeps on giving. At a one time fee, you have been able to cast more and more content as promised by Google when this first launched. This week, Google announced the latest addition to its arsenal of content including three Disney apps, iHeartRadio for live radio, DramaFever, and Twitch.

Disney is a big welcome especially to those families with kids. No longer do kids have to be glued to their iPads. With Chromecast, you will now be able to cast content from Watch Disney, Watch Disney Junior for all your Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, Jake the Pirate, and Princess Sofia fans, and also Disney XD for the teenagers.

iHeartRadio is another excellent app for all you radio listeners. This convenient app will turn your TV into a live streaming radio tuner accessing several top radio stations from talk, sports, news, to music at a snap.

DramaFever is an app extremely popular with those who love Korean, Japanese, Hong Kong and Chinese Drama. It also has series from Latin America boasting a total of 15,000 episodes globally! It also have movies so check it out!

Lastly, Google announced that Twitch will also be supporting Chromecast. Twitch is like youtube just for games. You can watch live gameplay or gameplay videos which has taken the gaming world by storm the past few years.

Google Cast Screen Mirroring Coming Soon To Chromecast

Google Cast Screen Mirroring Feature Comes To Chromecast

This is the moment a lot of people have been waiting for. A native way to cast a mirror image of your Android device will soon be available. Google announced at I/O this year that they will be releasing an update to Chromecast where it will have a feature to mirror your exact image on your Android device. This will allow you to show people what is on your screen from Maps, GMail, Instagram, eBay, Flipboard, well.. basically everything!

This directly competes with AirPlay function and eliminates Apple TV’s advantage. I just checked my Chromecast app which is running v1.7.4 and the ‘Cast Screen’ option is not available yet. You can check yours by going to the navigation drawer of the Chromecast app.

Google Cast Screen Mirroring Feature Comes To Chromecast.

Chromecast support for Apple and iPad iOS Now Available

netflix chromecast house of cardsOur iOS user friend’s rejoice! Google has added Chromecast support for Chrome app on iOS! This means that Apple iPhone and iPad users may now stream videos via Chrome browser and cast it to their screen. In other words, iPhone and iPad users are no longer limited to apps which have Chromecast support. They can cast content where Chromecast support is enabled on their website.

You can check Google’s directory of Chromecast ready apps and see if you can find something. There is also a way to check what is supported on iOS. Give it a try!

http://www.google.com/intl/en_us/chrome/devices/chromecast/apps.html

 

 

Chromecast Netflix Error 16003

Have you been having issues with Netflix on your Chromecast and get a 16003 error? Well you are not alone. It is reported that the update build 14975 pushed by Google may be the culprit. Users have been reporting issues when trying to cast Netflix onto their Chromecast device. Netflix is indicating at their site that this is due to a clock issue between Netflix, Chromecast, and your device. Follow the below instruction to get this fixed.

1) Sync up your clock on your device to the Internet through settings / data and time. Ensure it is on the same timezone as your location.

2) Open your Netflix app from your device. Go to app settings, force stop, and clear all cache.

3) Reboot your device and open only Netflix app to cast.

 

Aereo Arrives on Chromecast Giving Free OTA TV

Update July 14:The supreme court ruled that Aero was in fact subject to royalties for distributing media and is now in court again to try to be considered as a cable company so they can pay compulsory licensing arrangement but that also was shut down. Options may be running out for Aereo.

aero
For those who are ready to cut cable and enjoy truly free TV, your time may be coming soon. Aero, the company that provides free OTA service across tablets and mobile phones will be coming to your Chromecast soon. How this works, you connect to one of their HD antenna that is in their cloud. From these antenna’s you can access HD content and watch them from any device connected to your tablet or smartphone. It’s subscription service includes live DVR service for $4 and for an additional $4, you get 60 hours of PVR time!

So what does this mean for Chromecast? You can finally watch free OTA TV without that annoying TV that has been hovering over your living room and only be able to catch 1/3 of the channels! Give it a try!

aereo2

Chromecast now supports presentation from Google Drive

If you were wondering how you can project a presentation such as Powerpoint only your Chromecast enabled TV, you now have an option. Google launched an update to Chromecast where you will be able to cast presentations from your Google Drive. You can upload any Microsoft Office Powerpoint file and it will be ready to be casted. Follow these steps.

1) Open Google Drive from a Wi-Fi enabled PC with Google Chrome.

2) Navigate to your ppt file which you have uploaded.

3) Open the ppt file with “Google Slides”

3) From Google Slides, go to “Present” button at the upper right of your screen. A drop down menu will appear, hover over “Present on another device” then select your Chromecast.

Chromecast Google Drive

 

 

Is Amazon’s fireTV a threat to Chromecast?

Amazon announced today their own media streaming device called the fireTV. This is a much anticipated device which Amazon has been working on for quite some time. It has extremely impressive hardware specs with quad core processor, 2gb memory which is better than any other streaming device available in the market today. It also has a remote control which has capability to recognize voice and you can speak what you want to watch.

The biggest advantage over Chromecast is the large Amazon Instant video offering which includes free Amazon Prime videos. A lot of people who own the Chromecast have been searching for ways to watch Amazon videos using the Chromecast with mixed reviews.

Will you jump ship and purchase the fireTV?