Chromecast is a handy way to enjoy the smartphone experience on the large display of your TV. If you’ve got yourself a dongle or a TV with built-in Chromecast, here’s how you can mirror your Android or iPhone’s screen to Chromecast.
Mirror your Android or iPhone’s Screen to Chromecast
Chromecast was launched a couple of years back, and Google has improved it a lot over generations. In fact, a lot of modern Smart TVs now come with Chromecast built-in to allow users to mirror their phone’s screen without the need for the separate dongle.
Now, while the process may vary based on your phone’s make & model, the method to use Chromecast is quite easy, particularly for Android. But before we start, make sure that the device is set up and connected to the same Wifi network as your phone.
Steps to Mirror Android’s Screen to Chromecast
Using Google Home
- Plugin Chromecast to your TV, set up the device, and connect to your Wifi.
- On your Android, disable power saving mode (if enabled) and connect to the same Wifi network.
- Now, open the Google Home app.
- Scroll down and look for Other Cast Devices.
- Here, select your TV or Chromecast from the list of available devices.
- Tap on Cast my Screen at the bottom and confirm the prompt to begin mirroring.
That’s it. Your phone will now start mirroring its screen, and you’ll be able to enjoy videos, movies, games, and pictures on your TV. You can switch between portrait and landscape orientation using auto-rotation on your phone.
Alternatively, you can use your phone’s built-in screencasting feature to mirror its screen to Chromecast, as follows:
- Connect your phone and Chromecast to the same Wifi network.
- On your phone, drop down the notification panel and select the Screen Cast option from the quick setting tile. Different OEMs use different names like Smart View, Wireless Display, Miracast, etc.
- Once you tap the option, it’ll automatically show you available devices for casting. You can then select the Chromecast to start mirroring your phone’s screen.
Steps to Mirror iPhone’s Screen to Chromecast
Mirroring your smartphone on Chromecast is officially supported only on Android. However, you can still cast videos to Chromecast through compatible media apps on iOS.
- Connect your iPhone and Chromecast to the same Wifi network.
- Install the Google Home app, enable Bluetooth, and set up the device.
- Open the video that you want to cast and hit the Cast button.
- Select your Chromecast, and Google will start streaming that content to your Chromecast device.
Using Third-party Apps
Alternatively, you can use third-party apps like Replica to completely mirror the screen instead of casting through specific apps.
- Download the Replica App on your iPhone from App Store.
- Then, install the Google Home app and set up your Chromecast.
- Open Replica and select your Chromecast from the list of available devices.
- Start the Screen Mirroring.
As always, make sure that both devices are connected to the same Wifi network.
This was all about how you can mirror your Android or iPhone’s screen to Google Chromecast. Anyway, which of the method did work the best for you? Do let me know in the comments below. Feel free to reach out for any doubts or queries.
Watch your security cameras on your tellybox
Now that Nest has joined Google’s hardware team the two are fully integrated, but one of the first collaborations that came from the two companies was a feature to let you watch your Nest smart home security camera on a big screen via Chromecast – and a bit of help from Google Assistant.
Once everything is configured, a simple spoken or typed command is enough to see live video on your TV (or whatever ever Chromecast-ready device you have, like a Home Hub). You can also switch between multiple cameras quite easily, so it’s a great way of checking on your property from the comfort of your sofa or bed. You basically get the same feed that shows up in the Nest app, just on a much bigger display.
We’re going to assume you’ve already got your Nest camera(s) and your Chromecast(s) set up around the home. Follow the quick-start guides included with both, install the Nest app for Android or iOS and the Google Home app for Android or iOS, and you’ll be ready to get Nest and Google working together.
With those devices up and running, here’s how you link them together.
Get your Nest camera working with Google Assistant
To sling you Nest feed over to your Chromecast, you just need a device that runs the Google Assistant – it doesn’t have to be your Nest Audio or Google Nest Mini.
Heck, you could even use your Android TV with built-in Chromecast. There are a number of permutations here, but they all require the same amount of setup.
You’re going to need to head to the Google Home app, making sure your camera and Google Assistant device are on the same Wi-Fi network.
From there, we just have to make sure everything is synced up.
1) Tap +.
2) Click Set up device.
3) Click Set up new devices.
4) Tap the home you’re using.
5) Choose the device you’re pairing.
6) Click Done.
Now, if you haven’t already linked your Chromecast or TV, you’re going to need to do so. To do that, open up the Nest app on your phone, tap on the cog icon in the top right and then choose Google Assistant from the menu that appears. From there, you’ll just have to link Google Assistant.
Start casting video to your TV
Now that you’re fully ready to start streaming, there are a couple ways to do it. Each of your cameras is named something different, and is each of your Chromecasts. This won’t be an issue if you’ve got one of each, but you’ll need to keep names in mind if you’ve got a larger home with multiple devices.
Start out with, “Hey Google” or “Ok Google” and then you’ll be able to say, “Show [camera name]”, “what’s on [camera name]” or “[camera name] on [Chromecast name]”. If that doesn’t feel super natural, don’t be afraid to add a “play” or “show” in front of those.
Now, to change the name of a Nest camera, go into the Nest app, tap the camera feed, and then tap the cog icon to the top right -you can change its location and name by tapping the Where button. For Chromecasts, go into the Google Home app, tap the cog icon by your Chromecast on the main devices name, then Settings and then Name.
When you’re tired of the security feed, say, “stop [Chromecast name]”. Your Chromecast goes back to the usual rotating slideshow of wallpapers until you give it another job to do.
Hopefully everything will be up and running first time around. If something does go wrong, the most basic issues are usually to blame – maybe one of your devices doesn’t have a strong Wi-Fi connection, or it’s gone into standby mode.
Go through all the steps again to make sure you haven’t missed anything out, and double-check that your Nest camera is connected to Google Assistant. And of course, make sure you have both devices on the same Wi-Fi network. From there, you can ask a couple of questions: Is the Chromecast working correctly? Can you beam content from other apps to it? If not, then you might need to get the dongle reconfigured first.
Reinstalling the Nest and Google Home apps can also make a difference in fixing flaky connections, as it forces them back to their default settings and (in theory) gets rid of any corrupted data or badly configured settings that have sneaked in while you’ve been using your Nest camera or Chromecast.
Rebooting your router and phone, and resetting your Chromecast and Nest camera, can help—though this can take some time, so only start from scratch as a last resort. You’ll basically be setting up everything again from the beginning, to reestablish the connections and make sure all your devices can see each other.
Right now this functionality is rather basic. – you can bring up the Nest camera on the big screen and that’s about it – but as time goes on we’d expect Google to add more features as it continues to push Google Assistant as the future of just about everything.
By now, most people know that you can save a ton of money by cutting the cable cord. But if you want to stream to your TV, you probably need a device to do so. One affordable choice is Google Chromecast.
With it, you can stream almost anything from your phone to your TV.
In this article, I’ll walk you through the steps to set up your Chromecast and start streaming.
What You Need to Set Up Google Chromecast
Here’s what you need before you set up your Google Chromecast:
- TV with an HDMI port
- Wall outlet nearby
- Wireless internet
- Smart device
Once you have everything together, grab your Chromecast device and start your setup.
What Comes With a Google Chromecast (3rd Generation)
Here’s what comes in the box:
- Chromecast device
- Wall plug power adapter
- Micro USB cable
- Quick-Start Guide
As you can see, there’s not a lot of hardware. That’s because you’ll use your smartphone or another smart device as your Chromecast remote control.
How to Set Up Google Chromecast
To learn how to set up your Chromecast, you can watch the video featured above. Or keep reading to follow the setup steps for this streaming device.
Step 1: Plug It In
First, take the Micro USB cable and plug the Micro USB end (the smaller side) into the side of your Google Chromecast.
Then, put the regular USB end into the wall adapter and plug it into the wall outlet.
Now, plug the device into an HDMI port on your TV.
Remember the number next to the HDMI input you chose because you’ll need it in a minute.
Step 2: Tune Your TV
On your TV remote, use the input, source or similar button to tune your TV to the same input as the Google Chromecast.
The input on the source menu should match the HDMI port number on your TV where you plugged in your device.
Once you select the right input, you should see instructions from the Chromecast.
Step 3: Connect and Set Up Your Device
For this step, you’ll want to make sure your phone or other smart device is connected to the same Wi-Fi that the Chromecast will connect to.
The screen will prompt you to download the Google Home app to set up your streaming device.
Once you download it, open the app and click “Get Started.” It will then ask you to sign in to a Google account.
If you’re already logged in to one or more Google accounts on your device, they all will appear on the screen. Select the account you want to associate with Chromecast.
When there are other Google devices connected to the Wi-Fi, they’ll appear in the Google Home app as well.
To add your Chromecast, click the plus sign in the upper left corner, then select “Set up device.”
Click “New devices” and enter your home nickname and the address.
On the “Choose a home” menu, either select the home profile you created, or your existing home profile if you already have one set up.
The Google Home app will request location access, which you have to turn on in order to complete your Chromecast setup.
Once you do, Google will search for a device to set up. The device name in your app should match the device name displayed on your TV screen.
Click “Yes” and your device will connect to the Chromecast. Now your device will display a code that should match the code on your TV. If it matches, click “Yes.”
Then you must agree to Google’s legal terms and choose whether you want to share your device stats and crash reports with Google.
After that, the app will ask where the device is in your house in order to name it and help you organize your Google devices.
Now, select the Wi-Fi you want your Chromecast to use. Once you connect it, your device will install updates and restart.
Step 4: Link Other Services
Once your streaming device has restarted, the app will prompt you to link your Chromecast to other services like Google Assistant, radio services, and video services.
It asks you to link these accounts so that you can ask your Google Assistant to play a specific station. When you do, your device should be able to understand you and launch the service you asked for.
Step 5: Cast to Your TV
Now you’re done setting up! In your app, Google will show you the connections you completed then tell you that your Chromecast is ready to use.
You’ll have to use the “Cast” button in the apps on your device to display them on your TV via the Chromecast.
To learn how to do this, choose one of the examples Google provides in the app. Click the Cast button, choose your Chromecast nickname, and watch it on the big screen.
You can still use your device to do other things while you’re casting.
Google also tells you that you can control the volume of what you’re casting via the volume controls on the device you’re using.
When you’re ready to stop, click the cast button on your device and select “STOP CASTING.”
Now you just need to download the apps for your favorite services to start watching!
The setup is straightforward and the Chromecast gives you step-by-step directions along the way.
ClarkDeals.com editor Sarah has a Chromecast and says she really enjoys the streaming experience. One big plus for her is that multiple people can control the TV with different devices, so you don’t have to hand over your phone to let someone scroll through the channels.
Chromecast operates much differently than other low-cost streaming devices we’ve tested. There’s minimal hardware, which means you don’t have to worry about having to find a remote every time you want to watch something.
How is your Google Chromecast experience? Let us know in the comments below!
- How to use Chromecast: Everything you need to know
- The 20 Best Chromecast apps of 2016
- How to Improve Chromecast Performance
- How to use Chromecast to mirror your screen
- How to use Chromecast to play games
- How to use Chromecast to stream audio
- How To Turn Off Your Chromecast
- How to stream VLC Player to Chromecast
- How to use Chromecast without Wi-Fi
- How to reset your Chromecast
- Chromecast tips and tricks
Google Chromecast is a blissfully simple way to send video and audio seamlessly from your smartphone, tablet, computer, or smart device to your TV, no matter where it is in the house. To make things even better, Chromecast is wonderfully cheap and easy to pick up and use.
As long as your selection of apps includes Chromecast support, you’re using the Chrome browser, or your smart device supports Google Cast, you can send virtually anything to your TV via Chromecast. You can even mirror the screen of your device to your TV if you’d rather have a big-screen experience.
What’s more, guests can use your Chromecast thanks to the Guest Mode. Anyone within 25ft of the Chromecast, and who has the Google Cast/Home app, can beam content from their phone or device to the streamer. Alternatively, you can set them up as a user by giving them the four-digit PIN found in the app’s settings on their device.
How to Set Up Chromecast
The first step to using a Chromecast is acquiring one (that may sound obvious and you probably already have one if you’re here). If you don’t have one or you’re in the market for a new one, you can get the latest and greatest on Amazon for about $70. If you’re happy with a slightly older (but still great) model you can find them for around $35 online.
Chromecast works on wifi and connects to your other devices that are on the same wifi network. The first thing you’ll need to do to get started is to plug your device into your TV. Then you can start the simple set up process:
Download “Google Home”
Using your smartphone download the Google Home app available on iOS and Android.
Sign in to your Google account and click ‘Get Started’
Click ‘Set up new devices’
Click ‘Create another home’ then ‘Next
Give your home a nickname and address
Click ‘Chromecast’ if the app failed to find your device
If your Google Home app didn’t find your Chromecast, check your connections and make sure the light indicator is on. Verify that the device with the Google Home app is connected to wifi. Follow the connection prompts in the app to complete your setup.
The “Cast” Icon
Now that you have everything all set up it’s time to start casting. You can do this with so many devices that we can’t cover all of them so the first thing we’ll do is get you familiar with the “Casting Icon.”
Any time you see this icon, on any device, you can click or tap it to pull up the option to stream content to your Chromecast (well, almost “all” but here’s a list of compatible apps for you). You’ll see it on everything from Facebook videos to Netflix content. If you’re trying to stream from your phone, computer, or tablet, locate this icon to begin.
How to Cast from Google Chrome
Google Chrome makes it super easy to cast content so we’ll start here. Pull up your web browser and visit the site you’d like to display on your TV. We’ll use Netflix as our example, but you could use any website that appeals to you.
Click on the three vertical lines in Chrome
Click on your Chromecast
Choose your source
You can choose whether you’d like to cast the tab, the entire desktop, or just a file. Once you’ve made your selections the content you’re streaming will automatically appear on your TV. When you’re finished simply click the “Cast” icon in the upper right-hand corner of your web browser.
Casting from Apps
Whether you’re using Netflix, PlutoTV, Spotify, or any other popular apps you can cast directly from your device to your Chromecast. Let’s review some of the more popular ones:
Use Chromecast to stream Netflix
On Netflix, the icon is in the top right of the screen. To cast, press the icon, select your Chromecast from the next box, and – after a short delay – the video will play on your TV.
Use Chromecast to Stream Spotify
Love music? Using the Spotify App you can stream your music directly to your Chromecast. Don’t have a speaker that plays music loud enough for you? Why not use the TV?
Spotify is one of those apps that doesn’t have the traditional cast icon. Instead, it has a speaker/tv icon in the bottom left. Tap that and select “Chromecast.”
My cast icon is missing? What can I do?
If you can’t find the cast icon using the app, or even a web browser, there are a few things you can do.
First, ensure that your device is connected to the same wifi network as your Chromecast. Open the Google Home app and verify your wifi source.
Second, ensure that your browser or the app you’re using is up-to-date. You won’t see the option to cast if you’re using outdated software.
Can I cast my phone’s screen to Chromecast?
Yes, if you’re an Android user. Open the Google Home app on your Android device and tap on your Chromecast. Tap “Cast My Screen” and your phone’s screen will appear on your TV.
Just make sure your microphone permissions are turned on in the phone’s settings and that you’re connected to the same wifi as your Chromecast for this to work.
Is Chromecast compatible with Kodi for streaming?
Yes, those who use a Kodi-compatible device (such as Android or PC) can stream content using their Chromecast
Have you just purchased a brand new Chromecast without having a clue on how to set it up? Or maybe you set it up a long time ago, lost the instructions, and now need to reconnect it. Whatever the reason is, don’t worry — Android Authority is here to help you through the Chromecast setup process.
If you haven’t yet purchased a Chromecast, you might want to consider doing so. The base version is only $29.99 and it allows you to beam content from your phone, tablet, and sometimes even a computer, to a TV. Depending on your needs, it could be a full replacement for actual smart TV devices. Some of us here at Android Authority would say it is the best $30 we have spent in a while.
There are now two Chromecast versions at this stage; the standard model and the Chromecast Ultra, which streams video content in 4K resolution. However, the setup for both devices is the same.
Setting up the Chromecast with Google TV adds some extra steps, so we will also go over that process in this article.
Editor’s suggestion: Looking for a whole new TV? A number of brands include “Google Cast” technology baked right in. You can check out our favorite HDTVs with Google Cast and Android TV here!
How to set up Chromecast
To get started, plug your Chromecast into your TV’s HDMI input and plug it into the USB port on your TV as well. If there isn’t a free USB port on your TV (or if it’s being used), go ahead and use the included power adapter to connect the device to an outlet. Next, change your TV’s input channel to the one your Chromecast is connected to.
Okay, before we can set things up, we’re going to need to do a few things on your phone as well:
- Download the Google Home Android app from the Google Play Store or the Apple App Store. Open the app, accept the terms, sign in to your Google account, and follow the instructions.
- The main page should show up after the initial setup is complete. Tap Add, then tap on Set up devices, and finally tap Set up new devices once you see your Chromecast appear.
- Confirm which Google Account you want to use for your Chromecast. Allow the app to use Location services, and then tap OK.
- The app should then start scanning for your plugged-in Chromecast. When it shows up on your app screen, tap on Next.
Just a few more steps involving the app and the TV are needed:
- The TV should show a code to confirm the Chromecast is connected to your app. When it does, tap Yes.
- You may be asked to send device stats and crash reports to Google. Tap Yes, I’m in, if you want to or No thanks if you don’t.
- Next, you can choose the room in your home where the Chromecast is located, or create your own name by tapping on Add custom room and typing out the room name.
- Next, you will be asked to choose a Wi-Fi network for your Chromecast. Go through the necessary steps and then select Set Network.
- Your Chromecast might get some software updates. Just wait until they are done.
- Your Chromecast device should launch. After this, you are ready to enjoy your Google Cast experience!
Once it’s all set up, compatible applications on your devices should show a Cast icon when connected to the same Wi-Fi network. When watching a YouTube video, simply hit the Cast icon and select your specific device. The content will show up on your large screen TV and you can easily control it with your smartphone. Easy as pie!
How to set up Chromecast with Google TV
You need to get started the same way with the Chromecast with Google TV. Plug the device into your TV using the HDMI port and connect the power cable to an outlet. You can also hard-wire using an Ethernet port for better internet performance. Turn your TV on and switch it to the HDMI source you connected the Chromecast to.
Set up Chromecast with Google TV using a phone:
- Connect your phone to the Wi-Fi network you want your Chromecast with Google TV to be linked to.
- Download the Google Home Android app from the Google Play Store or the Apple App Store. Open the app, accept the terms, sign into your Google account, and follow the instructions.
- The main page should show up after the initial setup is complete. Tap Add, then tap on Set up devices, and finally tap Set up new devices once you see your Chromecast appear.
- A QR code should appear in the screen, scan it with your phone. Wait for the device to connect.
- Follow instructions and let the Chromecast with Google TV finish the set up.
Set up the remote:
Your remote should set up automatically, but if for some reason it doesn’t just follow these steps.
- If the remote isn’t set up, you should see a Control volume and power with your Chromecast remote announcement.
- Select Set up remote.
- To configure the volume button, go ahead and select the brand of the device used to play sound.
- The TV should now say You’ll hear music next. Make sure the audio device (TV or speakers) and select Next.
- When you hear the music point at your device with the remote and try to control the volume.
- The UI will ask you if changing the volume worked. Select Yes or No, try again.
- To configure the power button just turn the TV off by pressing the power button on your remote. Wait eight seconds and turn it back on.
- The UI will ask you if turning the TV on/off worked. Select Yes or No, try again.
- To configure the input button point your remote at the TV and try to cycle through input methods. Then switch back to the input source your Chromecast is connected to.
- The UI will ask you if the button worked. Select Yes or No, try again.
- You’re done! The screen should now say Chromecast remote is ready.
Any questions on Chromecast setup issues? Feel free to reach out in the comments below and we’ll do our best to help you out.
THERE is plenty to love about Google’s hugely popular Chromecast, but the HDMI dongle can’t always handle the video file you’re hoping to watch on the big screen. In our quick guide, you’ll learn to be able to stream any file to your Chromecast dongle.
Google Chromecast is incredibly versatile, but there can be some compatibility issues (Image: GOOGLE • GETTY)
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Chromecasts are hugely useful little gadgets. The HDMI dongles plug into your TV and let you wirelessly beam photos and videos from your iPhone, iPad and Android devices and Windows 10 and macOS computers to the big screen. Apps usually have to be updated to support Chromecasting – denoted by a small icon with a wireless signal in the lower left-hand corner.
Google introduce users to the Chromecast 3
However, it is possible to beam (almost) any file to your Google Chromecast. So, if you’ve got an iMovie project that you’ve rustled up during lockdown of some treasured family memories, or if you’ve ripped an old DVD that is not available to stream on any digital service – you should be able to enjoy them on the big screen with a few quick clicks.
If you’re struggling to play your file, either because of the format of the video or photo or because the app on your smartphone you’d like to use doesn’t have an in-built Cast button, we’d recommend Videostream. This brilliant little utility works by super-charging the Google Chrome web browser with the ability to beam almost any content to the living room television using a Chromecast. First up, you’ll need to download the app and install it on your machine.
Videostream is an app for Google Chrome that should make streaming your files a little easier (Image: VIDEOSTREAM)
With that done, you’ll need to launch the new Videostream app. Rather than load a standalone app, this will launch a new tab in the Chrome web browser. From there, you’ll be able to select the video from your files using the “Choose A Video” button in the middle of the window.
After you’ve picked the file you want to watch on the big screen, the service will load a small pop-up to let you pick a device you want to stream to. Any Chromecasts, Google Nest Hub Maxes, or Android TVs in the house will appear here. And if you’ve loaded-up a music file, you’ll have even more choice – with the likes of the Google Home and Home Max joining the fray.
Choose your weapon and then hit play to enjoy movie night.
It’s worth noting that if you already have popular open-source media player VLC installed on your computer, this boasts the ability to beam a wide variety of files to any Android TV or Chromecast in a few clicks.
Simply load up the video inside VLC as normal, but head to the Playback menu option at the top, then scroll down to Renderer. In the small sub-menu that loads, you should see any compatible Chromecast, Google Home or Android TV devices listed. Pick one and hit play.
If you are someone, like me, who spends more time viewing videos on the phone than on TV, the following thought must have entered your mind from time to time,
“I wish I can watch this on my HDTV instead of my phone.”
Being the expert in screen mirroring wireless displays, the EZCast team has the perfect solution for viewing your Android phones on a big screen TV.
We will outline the most popular ways to screen mirror your Android phone to an HDTV in this post.
Smart View or Miracast from your Android phone
The easiest way to share Android phone content to HDTV is by Miracast, which is called Smart View on Samsung smartphones.
In order to share smartphone content to HDTV, you need to first make sure the TV you own is Miracast-compatible, or connected to a Miracast receiver, like EZCast.
Turn on Smart View or Miracast on your Android phone, and select the EZCast receiver.
You can access the Smart View or Miracast feature on your Android phone, and choose your EZCast receiver, even without Wi-Fi, to begin wireless screen mirroring to you HDTV.
This is the best method for watching Netflix from Android phone on TV.
Use Google Home app to cast phone content to HDTV
Google Home app is a popular app from Google that helps you control most popular smart devices around your house.
From speakers, lights to TVs and cameras, you can use Google Home to control them to create a smart home that works for you.
If you have an EZCast dongle connected to your HDTV, you can also use Google Home to cast to it.
Use the mirror device feature within Google Home app to screen mirror.
Execute the Google Home app and find the Mirror device feature within Account, to cast your mobile content to EZCast and other supported wireless receivers.
Using an EZCast dongle with Google Home app is one of the best ways to cast your Android phone screen to TV without Chromecast.
Bonus tip: use Chrome browser to screen mirror laptops to HDTV
Despite being one of the most popular browser on the planet, Chrome’s casting feature is not very well known among its users.
All it takes to cast your laptop content to HDTV is a laptop, Windows or Mac, installed with Chrome, a Wi-Fi network and an EZCast dongle.
Use Cast to share the browser tab to a Chromecast or EZCast.
Once you connect both EZCast and your laptop to the same Wi-Fi network, you can execute the Cast feature to share the content inside the browser tab to Chromecast or EZCast.
Cast all your content to the big screen.
By David Nield | Published Jun 15, 2021 2:00 PM
The Google Chromecast may be one of the easiest-to-use streaming dongles out there. Plug it in, load up your app, select your Chromecast, and you’re good to go. But if you have more advanced needs, know that Chromecasts can handle them too.
If you want to play media files saved to your device, or you’re using a streaming app with no Chromecast support, there are hacks available so you can still get your content up on the big screen.
Apps that don’t support Chromecast
Many smartphone apps now automatically detect your Chromecast the moment you hit the cast button—but there are plenty that don’t. If you’re dealing with one of these, you’ll need a workaround.
When using an Android phone or tablet the simplest option is to cast the entire screen. Open the Google Home app on your mobile device, tap the Chromecast you want to broadcast to, and then pick Cast my screen and Cast screen. Your Android device, and any apps running on it, will then appear on the display connected to your Chromecast.
You can do the same trick on iOS and iPadOS, but you’re going to need a third-party app called Replica. You can install and use it for free, but for the maximum quality screen mirroring and to remove the watermark from the stream, you’ll need to pay for the premium subscription at $2.50 a month.
Load up Replica and choose your Chromecast. Once you’re connected, everything on your iPhone or iPad will be duplicated on the bigger screen.
Another option is to use Google Chrome on Windows or macOS to cast a browser tab or your entire desktop over to a Chromecast dongle. From Chrome, click the three dots (top right) then Cast. You’ll see all the available Chromecasts on the local Wi-Fi network listed, so select one to begin streaming. Then, use the Sources box to choose whether to stream a specific tab on your browser or your entire desktop screen.
This lets you cast anything playing in a browser window or in a third party app—from a news website to a word processor—as long as the Chrome browser is running as well.
Local audio, video and photos
Chromecasts are designed to stream media from the web, but you can also use these dongles to cast files saved to your phone, tablet, or computer. Some of the methods we’ve mentioned above will work. For example, if you have an audio file saved to your Android phone you can mirror the device screen to your Chromecast and then play the audio.
Google Chrome for Windows and macOS will do a good job as well. Click the three dots (top right) inside the browser, then choose Cast and Cast file from Sources. Once you’ve chosen an audio or video file from your hard drive and a Chromecast on your Wi-Fi network, you’ll see your content on the big screen or blasting through the speakers. The local file will also load up in a browser tab, and when this happens, you’ll get the option to show it in both places or only on the device connected to the Chromecast. We suggest the latter, as it can improve playback quality.
If you’ve got the newest Chromecast with Google TV that supports USB-C hubs, there’s also another option.
You’ll need a USB-C hub with power delivery support, and a mains plug with at least 45W to power an extra device, as the plug and cable that comes with this model of Chromecast won’t supply enough juice. Some of these hubs also offer an Ethernet port, so you can wire up your Chromecast with Google TV directly to your router for a more stable internet connection.
The USB-C hub sits in between the mains connection and your actual Chromecast, and you can then use the USB and memory card ports on it to load up the video, audio, and photo files you want to get on the big screen. Make sure the USB drive or memory card is formatted as FAT32, and apps running on the Chromecast with Google TV—like VLC for Android, for example—will be able to see and open the files.
Plex is also worth considering for streaming local files to a Chromecast. Use the desktop client to find the files and get them ready for streaming, and the Android or iOS apps on your phone to beam them over to your Chromecast. All of this functionality is free, but at $5 a month, a Plex Pass gets you some useful extras, including the ability to sync files from your computer to your mobile devices for watching on the go.
David Nieldis a tech journalist from the UK who has been writing about gadgets and apps since way before the iPhone and Twitter were invented. When he’s not busy doing that, he usually takes breaks from all things tech with long walks in the countryside.
Posted on September 30, 2020 at 2:30 pm
The new Google Chromecast with Google TV is a small device that you can plug into the HDMI port of any display to make a dumb TV smart, just like other Chromecast devices Google has released in the past seven years.
But the new model comes with two new features: a remote control and a brand new user experience called Google TV.
While you can still use your phone, tablet, or PC to select content and beam it to your Chromecast, now you can also use the remote to power on your TV, control the volume, and use button or voice input to search and browser for content and control media playback.
Chromecast with Google TV is a 4K media streamer that’s available starting today for $50, and it replaces the Chromecast Ultra in Google’s hardware lineup.
Well… mostly. There’s one thing the new Chromecast doesn’t do yet – it can’t handle Stadia game streaming at the moment. Google promises that Stadia support is coming in the first half of 2021, but for now if you want to stream Stadia games to your TV you’ll need a Chromecast Ultra. And if you don’t already have one, the only way to get one will be to buy a Stadia bundle.
If you don’t want or need 4K support or a remote control, Google is also keeping the entry-level Chromecast around for now. You can still pick one up for $30.
So back to the new Chromecast with Google TV. Among other things, it supports:
- 4K HDR and Dolby Vision
- Dolby Atmos 5.1 audio
- Chromecast functionality (control playback from a phone, tablet, or PC)
- Whole-home audio (pair it with other Chromecast capable devices)
- Google Assistant button on the remote
- Programmable support for TV power and volume controls
- Dedicated Netflix and YouTube buttons
But the hardware is only part of the story. Google is also launching a new TV experience that’s built on Android… but it’s not called Android TV anymore. It’s called Google TV (because what’s old is new again).
The company says the new Google TV brings together some of the best features of its wide range of products including Nest, Android, Google Assistant, YouTube TV, Google Photos… and perhaps most of all, search.
Google isn’t the first company claiming its smart TV software will make it easier to navigate all the streaming apps and services you use so you can just find the thing you’re looking for… and I’m not convinced anyone has truly solved this problem. But the company does say that Google Assistant will allow you to search for shows by name, category or other criteria and only view content from your subscriptions.
So theoretically you shouldn’t have to remember if that show you like is on Netflix, Hulu, Amazon, YouTube, or Peacock. Just hit the Google Assistant button on the remote, and Google will put the content front and center rather than the app.
The company does have a wide selection of content available, with support for over 6,500 apps.
And in addition to using Google Assistant as a glorified music and video search utility, you can ask Assistant a question and see the results on your TV, interact with your smart home devices (viewing the feed from your connected security camera on your TV, for example), or beam a Google Meet video call to your TV.
Google is also rebranding the Google Play Movies & TV app as Google TV, allowing users to add something to do things like:
- Add a TV show or movie to your watchlist from your phone and access it on your Chromecast (or vice versa).
- Start watching on one device and pick up where you left off on another.
The Chromecast with Google TV will be the first device to ship with Google TV, but Google says it’s working with partners to launch third-party hardware featuring the software in the future. As for whether Google TV would be available as a software updated for existing devices? That’s a little more complicated.
Google representatives tell me that some Google TV features may roll out to existing Android TV products, but that’s not necessarily the same thing as updating from Android TV to Google TV. And if you have an older Chromecast device? It’ll still just be a Chromecast device. No Google TV features for you.
Google does plan to continue supporting Chromecast and Chromecast Ultra hardware for the foreseeable future. So if you’re happy with your current media streamer, there’s no reason to replace it. But if you’re in the market for something new, the Chromecast with Google TV seems competitively priced with similar products from Roku and Amazon.