I've written a fair bit about the fact that I think we will use our mobile devices (phones, tablets, watches, glasses, etc) to control the more expensive devices in our lives (TVs, car dashboards, refridgerators, etc). I think this mode of user interaction will win out over software solutions built for and running on the more expensive and therefore longer lasting devices we own.

Until now, Apple's Airplay and Bluetooth were the only good solutions for this kind of interaction. I use both in my home and office and I use them every day. But, as I have written here before, both have issues. Airplay is proprietary and not available on all devices (Sonos being a prime example). And Bluetooth is old and doesn't scale well into high bandwidth applications.

I've tried DLNA which Google and others have supported and its wonky right now. It's possible that DLNA will evolve and emerge as another good alternative.

But yesterday Google announced Chromecast which is an interesting take on this approach. Chromecast is a HDMI dongle that you put into the HDMI port of your TV and then connect to your home wifi network.


I've just purchased four of them from the Google Play store. I will put them on all the TVs I've got in my homes and see how they work. We use Nexus 7s to control the TVs in our homes and so those Nexus 7s will now be able to do a lot more than switch inputs. They will be able to be the input.

It's too soon for me to know how big of a deal Chromecast will be. I need to get my hands on it, use it, and then I will have a better feel for it.

But this much I know. This commenter on Hacker News is spot on:

people should just think of TV's the way they think of their jamboxes: a higher fidelity dumb pipe for their existing content


Comments (Archived):

  1. Mordy Kaplinsky

    If this is an area you are interested in for your next phase of investing, you should do more research on the various approaches to the Internet of Things. There is a lot of interesting discussion about various approaches to this new era of connected devices and homes.One of the most thoughtful people on the topic is @scottjenson.

    1. fredwilson


      1. Mordy Kaplinsky

        Sure! IoT will also have a significant impact on how apps for mobile are designed.

        1. Mac

          Mordy, what other sites do you recommend along with Scott’s? ( Just enjoyed reading a couple of his posts.

          1. Mordy Kaplinsky

            I haven’t been keeping a list of links after reading them, but I found myself reading a lot of interesting stuff coming out of Gigaom’s Structure and Roamap conferences. In general IoT is an extremely broad terms encompassing everything from connected homes and cars to micro sensors in agriculture, so my suggestion would be to get an overall understanding of IoT and then zero into a particular niche of interest to apply the principals.I just finished reading an article about the IEEE’s participation in the home side, so i’ll share the link (http://www.itbusinessedge.c…If you’d like to discuss this is more depth feel free to ping me on Twitter.

          2. Mac

            Thanks for the references, Mordy. I will. I use Gigaom weekly.

  2. aweissman

    Here is why I think Chromecast is potentially very interesting – the gatekeeper between a user and viewing video content is now the browser (well, at least Chrome). If you want to watch something in a browser you can use Chromecast to do so on your tv. You don’t need a marketplace (like Netflix, or itunes, or Amazon) to find the content, you now just potentially need the web.

    1. William Mougayar

      Yes, that’s why I like this approach a lot. It’s a bit like what Plex does, but without the 3rd party streaming overhead. Only thing is that Chromecast will require you to have a strong Internet connection, because you’re not relying on any 3rd party box or service to buffer the streaming experience for you.

    2. Mordy Kaplinsky

      The only problem is that the website/app needs to support the “Cast” capability and my fear is that they wont enable it for the same reasons they didn’t wanto support Boxee and the like.

      1. William Mougayar

        but if it’s focused on the video streaming sites that are already streaming/casting anyways (Netflix, Pandora, G Play, YouTube, Vimeo, etc.), then it’s a moot topic, no?

        1. Mordy Kaplinsky

          It was my understanding from watching the roll-out that there’s a “cast” extension that needs to be implemented, and if I am right then by simply ignoring it an app such as Hulu can effectively disable streaming their content through the Chromecast dongle. I’d be happier if i’m wrong as it would mean that providers actively disabling the content are in effect blocking their customers from the full experience, and that’s just plain bad for any brand which they would have to answer for if Chromecast takes off.

          1. William Mougayar

            Yup, I’m not sure what the “Cast button” does- if it’s just a switch or if it requires a lot more on the other side.

      2. kidmercury

        yup, i agree. which will only encourage google to further develop its play media store and of course youtube. ultimately i think goog has enough to be a force here.

        1. Mordy Kaplinsky

          @kidmercury:disqus I believe that Chromecast is a game changer as well per the spirit of this post, but I just don’t wanto lose sight of the fact that its a bit more complex than it appears at first glance.

    3. Brand Winnie

      Andy I completely agree. This is why I think the web will win in the end. See my in-depth thoughts here:

      1. aweissman

        exactly, great essay

      2. SubstrateUndertow

        “Screens will be ubiquitous and they will be like windows, serving the same purpose for its users.In the end, it will be the visuals that matter.”It is possible that the important new break-though stuff will collect, process and output non-visual interfaces or automated local/distal behaviour on our behave?Tightly integrated sensing/processing/actuating ecosystems may not be HTML5 standards friendly as they quickly evolved to organically interact locally/distally with each other and their users?The non-trivial causal spread required to master tight organic integration of sensing/processing/actuating into function based ecosystems that mesh well with the larger physical and social systems in which they are embedded will most likely not be HTML standard friendly.

    4. Elie Seidman

      How do you navigate the UX/UI of a browser without mouse/touch/keyboard? Aren’t AppleTV/Roku/Tivo/Xbox basically just UX/UI adapted specifically for the physical use case problems of being N feet away from the screen with limited input controls (remote control vs mouse or touch)?

      1. William Mougayar

        I liked what that same HackerNews commenter said “Its a fool’s errand to try to design a UI for a TV that isn’t dreadfully painful to use: no one ever wants to interact with something 10 feet away.”

        1. Elie Seidman

          FWIW, I find that I’m able to get content (which is the main use case, right?) with AppleTV and Tivo UX. The limiting factors are not the UX/UI or being able to control them with a remote control but rather the content segregation โ€“ Amazon only on Tivo and iTunes only on AppleTV. SmartTV is a bit clumsier than both AppleTV and Tivo but useable enough that I can get the job done. Have not yet used Roku but I’m guessing that it will be about as good as AppleTV and Tivo.

          1. William Mougayar

            I am on Roku actually. It’s acceptable as a UI, but still not great. I do control it with their iPhone App more often than with their remote. It does give you a more familiar UI on the iphone than on the TV and faster / broader types of interaction.

      2. aweissman

        you navigate it via whatever device you are using – laptop, phone etc

        1. Elie Seidman

          Interesting. It replicates my Windows/MacOS/iOS/Android screen on the TV screen?

  3. Kasi Viswanathan Agilandam

    One Good thing about it is it covers IOS and Android, Mac and PC.

    1. fredwilson


    2. Elie Seidman

      Will it have easy access to paid iTunes content?

      1. Kasi Viswanathan Agilandam

        sorry if i gave u a wrong impression of owning one or tested one…. I read the article on TC this morning and the comment is based on that.

  4. JimHirshfield

    So, please explain…Is this a device to wirelessly connect and display the video and audio output from any computer, tablet, or smart phone on your home network to the TV?

    1. JimHirshfield

      nevermind. I just read the press release. ๐Ÿ™‚

    2. Aaron Klein


      1. JimHirshfield

        Stop. You’re killing me. ๐Ÿ˜€

          1. JimHirshfield

            Nothing is literal, literally.Hmm…I wonder who’s behind that parody account.

          2. Aaron Klein

            One would have to know how to surf to a blog post and wade through those nasty Disqus comments to find out.

  5. William Mougayar

    This is a brilliant product from Google. I held off buying an AppleTV for the reasons that the Chromecast solves.Now, if Google made it available outside the US Wide Web, it would be great!

    1. awaldstein

      What doesn’t AppleTV do for you?It’s cheap. An Apple router is as cheap. It works seamlessly.You can kvetch about it being closed (which it is) but while we complain and look, I just keep watching films night after night.

      1. markslater

        couldn’t agree more arnold.

      2. Elie Seidman

        Same question. I have AppleTV, Tivo and SmartTV and a (gifted) Roku I’m about to install. I don’t have Xbox. Other than price/size issues and AppleTV being the only one with iTunes, what’s the difference here? (not that the price issue is irrelevant)

        1. awaldstein

          Honestly, wrong guy for the details.I’m a huge movie geek and between AppleTV and pay per, I can find something to watch when I want it.Though–I still do subscribe to Netflix (for House of Cards) and because a couple of times monthly, I just need to see something that is not streamable. Most recently the Jean de Florette trilogy (

          1. Elie Seidman

            Jean De Florette trilogy is beyond fantastic (my mom is French). I feel same was as you do. AppleTV gets me iTunes and Netflix (and Hulu which I don’t subscribe to). Tivo gets me Amazon (and Netflix and Hulu etc etc.). SmartTV gets meโ€ฆ (but not iTunes). Curious to see how the Google product competes here other than price, size (not an issue for me โ€“ AppleTV is plenty small for my media cabinet) and UX/UI.

          2. awaldstein

            A truly amazing flic. Did a weekend marathon and I still find myself waking to scenes from it.I’m pretty religious about my love for movies as the most complex and wonderful means of telling a story. Not at all religious about how I get them to me on my couch!

          3. Elie Seidman

            Same here. The UX/UI/hardware part is literally .05% of the experience here. Content is king. A bad UX won’t ruin a great movie. Fantastic fantastic movies.

          4. William Mougayar

            I loved that series too. A classic. It borders the Godfather on how many times you can keep watching it. Have you watched Jeux Interdits.I didn’t know your mom is French. We’ll speak French then at the next call we keep threatening to have.

          5. Elie Seidman

            Have never watched Jeux Interdits -Oui โ€“ we must. My French is pretty good but seriously rusty.

          6. William Mougayar

            Ask your Mom. It’s a classic. You’ve heard the music.

          7. Elie Seidman

            I’m definitely going to watch it.

      3. Aaron Klein

        Both are great products.Which one do you think I’ll put on my conference room screen, since my CTO runs Windows?Which one will the 90% who have a Windows PC pick?Apple TV is great for people like you and me who buy BMW devices. Google just made one product that works with them ALL.I gotta tip my hat to them for that.

        1. awaldstein

          No argument of where my bias is.And yes…I need to be reminded that not everyone on the #2 train has an iPhone in their pocket!

      4. William Mougayar

        I like the fact that it runs on both android and iPhone devices, and the price point allows to buy more than one. But what’s killing me now is that it’s not available outside the US. I may have to up my US VPN service.

        1. awaldstein

          What do you now to stream movies at home from your couch?

          1. William Mougayar

            I have Roku.

  6. Barry Nolan

    As we transition to a mobile centric world, our mobile becomes our remote control for our ‘real-world’ services.Fictionalises app-enabled purchases of goods and services will be huge – effectively Amazon 1-click in every app. In fact, the most profitable apps today are all free. I recently wrote about this huge hidden economy here –….

  7. William Mougayar

    Fred- I thought the Chromecast connects to the USB of a TV, not the HDMI. (unless there’s a cable converter)

    1. fredwilson

      i think its an HDMI dongle

      1. kidmercury

        siding with fred in this beef, i was under the impression it was an HDMI dongle

      2. Barry Nolan

        HDMI plus power cable

      3. William Mougayar

        It seems to need both. It says “requires separate USB power”.

      4. Elie Seidman

        Needs power as well. Has a micro USB port on it and a power adapter.

    2. Kasi Viswanathan Agilandam

      Here is the answer i read on TC….โ€œTake it out of the box, plug it into HDMI, power it over USB, connect it to WiFi, and youโ€™re done.โ€

      1. fredwilson


    3. Elie Seidman

      Connects to HDMI on one side and power (via USB) on the other.

      1. William Mougayar

        but it doesn’t require continuous USB during play, so you’ll just need to remember to charge it, i guess. any idea how long does one charge last at full play?

        1. Elie Seidman

          Interesting. Curious to find out how long it lasts on battery power. But in practice I would imagine people leave it plugged in since the HDMI ports are often not in the most convenient places in the world.

        2. Aaron Klein

          No battery. Power is via AC adapter or USB. No need to use USB if you can plug it into the wall behind the TV.

          1. William Mougayar

            plug its usb-out into the wall you mean?

          2. Aaron Klein

            Power adapter is in the box. I’d assume it’s mini USB on the other end. Normals don’t notice that; it’s HDMI + power.Sent from my iPad

  8. Guest

    Like it. It’s solving the box issue for a bunch of s/w focused companies.

  9. jason wright

    tech – it’s all still far too clunky.

    1. fredwilson

      yupthat’s opportunity screaming out loudly

      1. LE

        “that’s opportunity screaming out loudly”So far Apple is the leader in the race to fix the “can’t program the VCR” problem.

        1. SubstrateUndertow

          I wonder how long before Apple decides to eat the cannibalization an just flip the switch that turn a new Apple TV into a full blown iOS big-screen desktop computer experience merged into your existing TV ?tic . . . tic . . . tic . . .

  10. Dan Epstein

    Has Google announced what technology is powering Chromecast? Did they build their own Airplay, something opensource, etc.

    1. fredwilson

      here is some speculation courtesy of AVC regular Tom Sella:Some speculation:

      1. Dan Epstein

        If that’s a link, can you repost?

        1. tsella

          I just posted. Did a few edits to the original email I sent Fred.

          1. Dan Epstein

            Thanks Tom.

      2. kidmercury

        so tom sella’s speculation is that there will be some speculation. good to knowEDIT: this comment no longer makes sense since tom’s comment is now showing up; now it might read like a diss which is not intended.

        1. Mordy Kaplinsky

          I wonder if and what this has to do with the DIAL protocol that both Youtube and Netflix have been working on as part of a larger industry group of peers.

          1. Guest

            This is using DIAL.

          2. tsella

            Reviewing the SDK docs now – its not only DIAL.

          3. Mordy Kaplinsky

            Thanks! Guess its both Dial and open to some alternative approaches. Flexibility is a good thing for this type of product IMHO.

      3. tsella

        Its mostly about the hardware, software and UX.App + WiFi Direct + DiAL (http://www.dial-multiscreen…- The Marvell DE3005 is not a listed part, but given its running Netflix NRD and on a Marvell AP, I assume its a Cortex A5 design, keeping costs, footprint and thermals down while being able to run NRD (its predecessor, ARM1176 is the core in the low end Rokus).- The RAM and flash modules are also Marvell made. I would assume 256MB RAM if its a 720p device or 512MB if its 1080p device. For Flash I’m guessing 256MB given the footprint of NRD+QT and to support software updates.- The user manual specifies PlayReady license, which makes sense, as this is what is used in both NRD and YouTube premium.- There is no mention of audio codec support in manual, so I think its pretty safe to assume its an AAC 2 channel affair only, maybe MP3. No fancy Dolby 5.1 support.- The Azurewave WiFi module IC seems to Azurewave AW-NH387, which is yet another Marvell win in this design. Basically, Chromecast is a 100% Marvell unit. I’m guessing they went with Azurewave package just to spare the WiFi cert. Interestingly, while its not being advertised anywhere, it could mean that Chromecast could also support Bluetooth.- WiFi is probably one of the more difficult things they had to deal with – having a WiFi working properly in a constrained space behind the TV which is heavily shielding.- It seems it can be powered both directly or via the micro-USB, so its a combined MHL/HDMI connector.- I will not be surprised to see this to software evolve supporting Miracast as well – the building blocks are all there. Its even possible that it supports HDCP 2.0, in which case it will support Miracast protected video as well. It makes a lot of sense from an Android evolution perspective.

  11. Dan Epstein

    Also, Ben Evans had some interesting speculation about Apple doing the same thing (hdmi dongle) 1 month ago. I’m sure the Chromecast team got a kick out of this, assuming they saw it.

  12. kidmercury

    chromecast is going to be da bomb, i can’t wait to get a hold of it especially at the poor/cheapskate-friendly price of $35. though i think an integrated solution is necessary and consumers should focus on picking the ecosystem that is right for them. younger folks who fell off the turnip truck yesterday will choose crapple; the rest of us who have earned some wisdom will probably choose google. i’m still rooting for amzn here, but they need to up their tv game asap. the bold and technologically skilled will go the roll your own route, but most of us need/want something packaged.

    1. Andrew Kennedy

      “the bold and technologically skilled will go the roll your own route, but most of us need/want something packaged.” #truth

    2. awaldstein

      Yup…Remember Google TV?Either Google needs a core DNA shift to market devices to the mass market or the mass market needs an across the board behavioral change.Neither will most likely happen.

      1. kidmercury

        i think they are already shifting to market devices, google nexus being the clearest example. samsung’s dominance in TVs is the perfect setup, assuming the alliance continues samsung TVs will come with google stuff pre-installed. the only missing ingredient is physical stores, but that is always just one great partnership away.

        1. awaldstein

          ‘one partnership away’ perfect.BTW–just saw this:…Still speculative. But at least it is non derivative and a real shot. I hope they think it through and don’t just throw it against the wall.

          1. aweissman

            exactly. Google Helpouts plus Chromecast means anyone can set up their own shopping channel just using the web

          2. awaldstein

            I’m not a Google fanboy but this interests me (as do all marketplaces).I realize I’m speculating on top of speculation but two pieces are curious to me:1. Video stream as channel. As someone who personally sold tons of product on HSN in the early days and has consulted to video chat companies for years, curious/hesitant/hopeful.2. Amazon rules cause they have warehouses everywhere. I live in NYC and never do expedited shipping and 8/10 get stuff next day. Where that sits in this solution is TBD.I love the idea. I just don’t have any reason to believe that Google will get over themselves and understand that the mass market ain’t changing, they need to!

          3. LE

            Amazon just started (July 1) charging sales tax (7%) in NJ. It’s already altering my buying thought process making it less attractive.The delivery thing is great though.

          4. SubstrateUndertow

            7% – what multiple of there profit margin is 7%I guess it is the same multiple other tax payers must shell out to provide that small Amazon profit margin ?

          5. LE

            It’s really a matter of changing buying behavior. Similar to how offering “free” equates in someone’s mind to more than a dollar savings.Along those lines even if Amazon were to lower their prices 7% (and they won’t and can’t) it won’t be the same as someone knowing they can save sales tax “I’m getting away with something” etc. Just like “free shipping” means more than “saving $1.75 shipping cost.”Now in a perfect world people would compare pricing delivered with tax and shipping and make the best buying decision “turn key price” but they don’t. They respond to various signals that trigger behavior.That said I”m sure Amazon who has rolled out sales tax in various states knows exactly how this will alter behavior and isn’t worried at least long term of the sales tax situation.

      2. LE

        “a core DNA shift””Neither will most likely happen.”Agree totally. All flows from that academic top and hiring practices. Thinking they have the best idea of what “smart” is.I remember very clearly when the baby bells deregulated in the 80’s and went from being public utilities to trying to act like marketing companies. It is really difficult to do when things are baked in in a large scale organization. Everyone hired thinks a certain way no way to alter that without a massive change which can’t and won’t happen.No “get rid of the sqeegee men” bolust is possible.

    3. Elie Seidman

      Are you expecting significant differences here between Apple, Roku, Tivo, Google and Xbox? Don’t the price points on the hardware all converge pretty rapidly?

      1. kidmercury

        i have a roku, and it is a huge pain in the ass to get youtube to work properly on it — so much so that i don’t really use it. i also routinely have trouble watching files i downloaded to my computer on my tv via roku. i think google is better positioned to solve these problems, especially the youtube issue. i’m not experienced with apple tv, tivo, or xbox so i don’t know about those. but in general i expect google media to work better with chromecast, and for google computers (i.e. android devices, chromebook, glass, etc) to work better as well.i think goog has a major pricing advantage because they can better subsidize things through advertising or their ecommerce streams, if they can grow them.

        1. Elie Seidman

          One thing I have to give Apple credit for, Airplay works pretty well. I don’t use often Youtube as a content source that I watch on the big screen so I don’t have much in the way of experience with that use case.

  13. Anthony Serina

    Big fan of any new technology advancements in hardware, think we could use more of it. Especially batteries with extended life. Software gets so much play but it is a symbiotic relationship.

    1. Lucas Dailey

      I lean the other way. We definitely have a lot of devices to invent, but apart from computing tech they’re all based on a limited number of sense (fixed maximum fidelity). -Sound is near built out. -Vision too, though Glass and projectors will nearly complete build out.-Smell & Taste: please no, but eventually.-Touch: haptics are getting better, but a poor input sense besides gaming & security applications.Computing tech does really excite me, however. I think Moore’s Law will hold strong.When it comes to software I think we’re still in the dark ages. Both building it and designing it.

      1. Anthony Serina

        We still need cheap, accessible, and fast internet, alternative energy to power mobile devices for days at a time, and more wearable technology.I do agree though that with the current hardware much more software can be built upon the existing technologies.

        1. Lucas Dailey

          I totally agree. I put that all under “computing tech”, anything black-box to the consumer. Someday people will be the bottleneck, not the tech. Can’t wait.

        2. Kasi Viswanathan Agilandam

          and a quick 5-10 second full-recharge capability … what is annoying with the battery is the time it takes to recharge.I read an article about someone developed a proto to recharge the iphone is just 2-3 seconds.

  14. Kasi Viswanathan Agilandam

    What goes around comes around …My neice and nephew converted their old computers as their bedroom TV with some connector (cable to USB) and some software for 25$.In-fact why there should be separate TV and puter-monitors? afterall they are JUST dump display units …

    1. kidmercury

      i don’t think they are just dumb display units. they have different cases uses and thus benefit from hardware that can offer a specific user experience.

      1. Kasi Viswanathan Agilandam

        yes… you change the connectors based on your use case and not the entire display i missing something?

      2. LE

        Don’t forget the dumb people like myself who buy Apple products.Anyway part of the use cases are also where you physically use the product.My brother in law had a heavy 20 or 23″ Sony Trinitron hanging in his bathroom back in the day.One day my sister came home and found that it had broken loose of the mounting on the wall and had smashed to pieces on the floor. Had someone been there would have resulted in serious injury or death. Although they look for quality in everything they do in general this was a case where they didn’t get the right guy to hang the TV set. (They don’t buy Apple either).

        1. kidmercury

          you keep saying i’m saying apple customers are dumb. that’s not what i’m saying; i’m saying they’re naive and easily deceived. there is a difference.

          1. Dale Allyn

            i’m saying their naive and easily deceived.This is such a strange point of view or attitude to me. This sort of thing comes up in photography discussion forums in the form of Canon vs Nikon. It used to be Mac vs PC, but now it’s more iOS vs Android. It’s all very silly.Apple produces excellent products which satisfy certain needs for their customers. The products typically place user-experience as a higher priory than price. That appeals to some, but is less important to others. It’s all good. People should buy and use what they like; buy tools that provide solutions to their problems or otherwise suit their needs.There is nothing “naive” about buying a product you like, which provides you with the value proposition which suits your preferences.I curse Apple for many things it does or makes (e.g. their mice are utter crap; and I hate when function follows form in anything, so if it looks good it damn-well better function great too), but a closed system suits many users and naivetรฉ has little to do with it. It’s a preference.Cheers!(edit: typo)

          2. kidmercury

            it’s not about open or closed. it’s about most customers not knowing they are walking into a trap in which apple will intentionally make interoperability difficult for no other reason than competitive advantage, thus using apple customers as pawns in its larger strategic customers don’t realize they are pawns in a corporate game, which is why they are naive. they are also naive because they don’t understand that apple is a hardware company, not a data company, and that on the internet, data > hardware — and thus data companies and trends will be the primary driver of internet technology evolution in the long run.granted, one could argue that we are all pawns, and that google and amzn have the same strategy. i sort of agree, although i think goog is a bad government like what we have in the US, while apple is a bad government like what is going on in north korea.

          3. LE

            “in which apple will intentionally make interoperability difficult for no other reason than competitive advantage”Did you go to business school or do you spend time observing business?That’s the way business works. You try to gain an advantage. [1]That’s the way you make money. In the example @daleallyn:disqus gave with Canon vs. Nikon they both have (iirc) proprietary lens mounts so you can’t easily swap lenses.What is so wrong with that? Poor me I can’t use my Canon lens on a new Nikon body.[1] You are a sports person so I would assume that in sports when teams are competing (for your entertainment) they aren’t helping out and making it easy for their competition to win the game? Are they?Why do you feel that the society we live in things like this are bad? They aren’t. If people weren’t driven to win we wouldn’t have half the great shit we have.

          4. kidmercury

            i agree you gain an advantage. some try to gain advantage by helping others, others take a more sinister route. the naive will fall for companies that take a more sinister route.

          5. Dale Allyn

            i agree you gain an advantage. some try to gain advantage by helping others, others take a more sinister route. the naive will fall for companies that take a more sinister route.Kid, I don’t want to give the impression of ganging up on you. I respect you and appreciate your significant contribution here.That said, I’m surprised by your comment above and your frequent support and adulation of Amazon. It seems inconsistent from an otherwise consistent AVCer.Amazon promoted an app via their site and ubiquitous tv ads which allowed people to enter brick and mortar shops, scan the shopkeepers’ products’ barcode and buy it from Amazon. This is horrendous behavior IMO.Further, Amazon, in the interest of SEO does not remove linked products from their site once an independent business owner no longer wishes to be part of the “other venders” system on Amazon. All those “no longer available” products often keep the actual owner of an original product from even showing up in search results. There’s a lot of info available to read about this. Some travel sites have done this as well, and crippled family owned destinations by it.Kid, you’re very smart, and I often learn things from you here. We agree that Google is well positioned to make Chromecast a game changer. But one could suggest that you might be naive for not seeing that Amazon is no different than some other very successful companies, but they just happen to choose other avenues by which to do their “deeds”. ๐Ÿ™‚

          6. kidmercury

            no worries on ganging up i enjoy the conversation. ๐Ÿ™‚ boring conversations in which everyone agrees are stupid. in fact in such instances i will try to start some controversy just to make it interesting and less boring.i don’t think the comparison shopping app from amazon is horrendous behavior, in fact i use the app myself! ๐Ÿ™‚ it is about creating a market with clear price information.the vendor issue you cite is probably real, i didn’t know about it before but i’ll take your word for it as it sounds very plausible. however, i think amzn does more for small businesses than many, many other companies. in fact, that is why i like amzn and google quite a bit; because i think they provide a foundation for small businesses. apple, twitter, and other companies like them just try to con you into building on top of them so they can take your lunch. watch what happens with apple’s app store, as technology trends progress it’s going to be an increasingly difficult environment. apple is not designed to share the customer. you can either share the customer and scale or own the customer and not scale; i think trying to do both, which apple tries to do, results in massive governance problems.

          7. Dale Allyn

            At the risk of spoiling the conversation ๐Ÿ˜‰ we have common ground again. I agree that Amazon and Google do more for small businesses than Apple does. Of course, Google’s and Amazon’s models are actually geared to provide such service and profit from it. Apple’s is not.I’m not a hater of Google or Amazon. Both are very impressive businesses and have much for which to be admired. I have criticisms of each, as I do of Apple.We disagree on the ethical breech of the Amazon app. If one wants to use a phone to search for a product to compare value while in a store, I’m okay with it. But once you start scanning inventory which was paid for in advance and put on the shelves for the convenience and support of a local community (via an app provided by a huge competitor), IMO at the very least it’s tacky. Sorry, but I see it as a bottom-feeder tactic. You might find it strange that I’d not be troubled by an independent app that does the same thing, but provides full web search results, not just Amazon results.I research every buy I make very carefully, but would never want to walk up and down the aisles of a store filling my Amazon cart as I go. I’ll often opt to not buy from a local merchant because their price is just too much higher than internet prices (i.e. not competitive even factoring the immediate availability), but I don’t like Amazon’s approach here. That’s me.My remarks agains Google are aimed mostly at how they and other big data projects connect the dots within their huge data stores. I used the “creepy” for Google elsewhere in this thread. I use Google as my preferred search engine โ€“ I hate Bing โ€“ and I know how to construct search queries in Google to get results I need. But that doesn’t mean that I find it endearing to have them constantly peering over my shoulder. Aside from search I’m generally moving away from Google services. LinkedIn is the worst regarding this lurking and data abuse, with their phony connection requests and other spam.Amazon’s tactic of not delisting outside vender’s products when they depart, even when requested to do so, is a significant mark against them in my book. It also ads to a crap user-experience when searching the site for products โ€“ plus crap SERPs because of being so SEO-heavy. LIke Apple, Amazon has areas where I feel they could improve. My point has simply been that each of these companies are immensely successful, and each has examples of tactics which serve their own needs more than those of their users/customers. That’s business.

          8. Dale Allyn

            granted, one could argue that we are all pawns, and that google and amzn have the same strategy…I suggest that this is where the focus should be. To think that somehow Google or Amazon have our best interests in mind (ALL of our interests, not just some) more so than Apple would be a very naive stance to take. IMO Google has moved well into the “creepy” state, Amazon has some really nasty practices for the benefit of their SEO which hurts small business owners who helped them build their empire.Apple = North Korea? that’s just your passionate bias getting the better of you, IMHO. It’s okay, but I believe it’s a very subjective and emotional position.I like some Apple products and dislike (even hate) some others. The company methods don’t appeal to you, and I get that. Amazon is one whose practices have been extremely off-putting to me. Let’s ALL not be naive and recognize each of these behemoths for what they are. Even better, let’s support high quality, young disrupters whenever possible/practical.

          9. LE

            “The company methods don’t appeal to you”Exactly.Some people get pissed because they don’t like playing the game because something is unjust or perhaps they are not good at it.”Why do I have to tip the maitre’d to get a good table?””Why are their ticket scalpers?””Why do people with connections get into the good colleges?”.Learn what the game is and then play it so you can win while the other people are whining about how the game is rigged or not fair.

          10. Dale Allyn

            “Learn what the game is and then play it so you can win”Exactly. “Business” in a nutshell.

          11. kidmercury

            the comparison to countries is very useful. america has an excessively tyrannical immigration policy, but it is not nearly as ridiculous as north korea’s. i believe one could make the same comparison with google/amazon/apple. you may like living in the technological version of north korea; you are not alone. some of us however know how that game ends and wish to not be a part of it. android will gain dominance, like msft before it, because of governance policies that are more agreeable with the world at large and the infinite number of uses cases that are required. PC wars all over again. apple will resist this till no end, suing everyone and using an outdated pricing strategy, to defend its untenable position. all in vain.

          12. LE

            Let’s do what I call the “governors” test. Use an outlier example with an important-esq person to prove that essentially both have the same net effect language wise.You meet someone important.You tell them “you are naive and easily deceived” instead of telling the “you are dumb”. (By the way I could say the same with people who are all caught up with the Pope but I realize they have been brainwashed (used in a non-negative way as a statement of fact) at an early age to care about the Pope. (To them the pope is a brand. To me it’s not.)The net effect is the same. You are saying “you are lacking in a key area. You are defective or somehow not advanced enough to see the right answer”.Noting also that you did call Apple “Crapple” in this thread. That’s not the same as saying “Apple makes crap” but it means the same thing.

          13. kidmercury

            there is a difference between intelligence and wisdom.a person who is outstanding at math is probably intelligent. if this same person is easily deceived, i.e. they fall for one of those scam emails that tells them to give their bank info over, they are naive. they are still great at math, and thus intelligent; they are simply not wise. perhaps a bit is a good explanation of the difference between intelligence and wisdom: http://www.differencebetwee

          14. LE

            Another perspective suster length pontification on this by PG.I don’t care to read the entire “essay” nor do I particularly care what PG thinks in this particular area but I was curious after seeing what you linked to above another perspective. Interesting to note that PG (as opposed to Fred) always seem to have people review what he writes before release.

  15. Barry Nolan

    My mobile controllable world:If I forget to record the match, I whip out my Sky+ app (I will do this even when in front of the TV). If I need a taxi, I use Hailo to hail and pay for a cab. If I need to make a make an international call, I launch Skype. If I want to record a business expense, I open Xero. When I travel, I nearly always use HotelTonight. Watch a movie on TV, I fire up Nexflix.

    1. fredwilson


      1. Abdallah Al-Hakim

        Halo is awesome but a couple of weeks we had a major storm in Toronto and when trying to use hailo the service was too busy due to heavy demand. So it was back to the old fashion hand waving to hail a cab. It would be great if technology can resolve these situations but perhaps this is the Limitation.

        1. fredwilson

          If the regulators let markets work it could. But prices would rise during times of crisis

    2. CJ

      I second HotelTonight, was almost stuck in Vegas for an extra night due to issues at the airport, room at the Caesar’s Palace just seconds from being booked? $30! Fuck yeah.

    3. ShanaC

      Basically, everything i turning into an interlinked computer

  16. Elie Seidman

    Having not used the product, it’s hard to comment super intelligently on how it’s better or different but it seems to me like the main news here is the price and size? (and maybe a better UX/UI?)I have Samsung Smart TV, AppleTV and Tivo already connected to my TV. I was just at a conference and was given a free Roku and I’ll install that when I’m back home. I’ve seen very little difference between AppleTV and Tivo (and to a lesser extent, SmartTV). Both give me access to Netflix and Hulu. Apple has iTunes and Tivo does not. Tivo has Amazon and Apple does not. Samsung SmartTV seems to be adding diverse content library access pretty quickly. It seems like Apple with its relationships with the content owners is going to be a bit further ahead with the likes of HBO and Showtime among others. I don’t have an Xbox but it seems like they’re already a huge player here with ~50M active users of their content platform?Who is the meta search player to find content regardless of which HDMI port/box/software platform its connected to?I definitely agree with you that controlling large devices with small ones is the future. I control my thermostat (Nest) and speakers (Sonos) from iOS apps (and browser on laptop) and can easily envision that my next new dishwasher will have similar control.

    1. LE

      Having not used the product, it’s hard to comment super intelligently on how it’s better or different but it seems to me like the main news here is the price and size? (and maybe a better UX/UI?)Raises an interesting marketing question which is will people be able to quickly figure out why to buy the product without a lengthy explanation and reason?Like when I used to locate a dull person to review direct mail pieces to see if they got the point which is similar to the “Old Grey Whistle Test” in music.Interesting that by your comments it has failed this test since you said “main news here is the price and size?”.

  17. John Revay

    I’ve just purchased four of them from the Google Play store.$35 – price point. #NoBrainer

    1. Aaron Klein

      Sales have got to be through the roof at that price point – especially since the one I ordered was effectively $11 after deducting three months from my Netflix bill.

      1. Dale Allyn

        Aaron, I missed that this dongle eliminates the need for a Netflix account. You’re saying that full Netflix access is provided as well? I assumed one still needed the subscription.

        1. Aaron Klein

          Nope, just three free months of Netflix included with early purchase. Works for existing customers too.

          1. Dale Allyn

            Ahh, thanks. That makes sense. Skimming and multi-tasking is a bad combo. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  18. george

    You’ve got to like those people from Mountain View, they come up with a fresh take and they understand the value of product adoption and product positioning.

  19. Sebastian Wain

    Since the device itself seems simple and can be quickly copycatted by zillions of cheaper devices, I wonder if Google is just using it as a Troy Horse for their Google Cast SDK and its ecosystem.

    1. tsella

      more importantly — it will push App makers to support DIAL.

  20. Pramod Dikshith

    Which TV do you own? Will you be able to control any TV using Nexus or is it just Samsung? I will look forward for your thoughts on the Chromecast as I am really looking forward to buying that along with the new Nexus tablet

  21. Farhan Lalji

    Really bullish on this, simple product, simple installation and simple pricing. The improvement from Google TV is several orders of magnitude in a short period, will be interesting to see where Google takes Chromecast from here.

    1. leigh

      will it give google access to the user data too? talk about biggest ad agency then…..

  22. leigh

    have you done a post on your home entertainment set up? be interested to see that …….

    1. fredwilson

      I have in the past but its always changing. I iterate on it a lot

  23. kenberger

    “Importantly though, the mirrored content isn’t beamed from your local device, but is streamed from the cloud direct to the dongle when you activate mirroring on a Chromecast-compatible service like YouTube or Netflix. At that point, your PC or mobile is freed up for multi-tasking, and for working as a WiFi-based remote control for the content on the bigger display”<– a big deal, because while conceptually you think you want to beam content from your device, exactly as you do with a Bluetooth setup, this remote control approach is technically superior.

    1. fredwilson

      Great point

  24. kenberger

    I’d actually want the dongle residing on my AVR’s hdmi, rather than the tv’s, as skipping my sound system is a deal killer. Wondering if this can work that way too.Also, miffed that chromecast functionality isn’t now built into GoogleTV. Should check on whether it is/ will be.

    1. CJ

      I’m sure it would work that way and I totally didn’t think of that.

  25. Shaker Cherukuri

    Chromecast might kill the cable box in our house. Good thing Comcast has content (NBC). Google Glass is the ultimate control device for the car I think. From my G+ post:Google GLASS Automotive Infotainment Integration could be a possible killer application for #glassWill replace the following:SmartphoneNavigationTouch Screen DisplayInstrument PanelRadio SystemsInfotainment services like XMAutomotive DiagnosticsMakes it a semi autonomous automobile with adaptive cruise control. Eventually an extension of the self drive system. The two Project Xs come together Glass and Self Drive.

    1. Alan Warms

      Chromecast plus the new Yidio app – number 6 in top charts free entertainment. is basically a cable provider in your pocket – with massively positive exception that I can add any content I want, a la carte, without talking to a customer service rep – it’s EXTREMELY seamless.Disclosure – I am investor and on Board.

    2. Techman

      Do you have a local over the air NBC station? If that’s all that is keeping you from cable, then all you have to do is invest in a good antenna or possibly a digital tuner box if your TV doesn’t have one (all modern TVs do).

      1. Shaker Cherukuri

        The NBC comment above was about Comcast trying to stay relevant. Meaning this is the reason Comcast acquired NBC. Chromecast and a possible Kindle cast later from Amazon is sure to kill the cable box but Comcast will still have content due to its NBC acquisition.

  26. Nick Grossman

    Hell yeah. I had a “OMG; duh” reaction to this this morning. Ordering one.

  27. Garrett Button

    You may already know about it, but the new standard Google is pushing (and using to get away from DLNA) is miracast, which has also been tentatively accepted by Microsoft in 8.1. Miracast has decent backing and a good deal of potential to become an open Airplay alternative, and if it sticks it could be a big step towards the connected households you mention at the start of the article.

    1. ShanaC

      having an open wifilike protocol is very overdue. And MSFT picking it up basically gives extra points to the OneWhich leads me to the question of if the next generation of hardware going to be a Google VS Microsoft (secret dark hourse underdog) race, and not actually include apple

      1. CJ

        Apple’s done. Cook lacks the vision of Jobs, the company will continue to do well for a long time but I don’t think they’ll set any major trends anytime soon.

      2. Techman

        The Xbox One?*laughs sarcastically*

    2. fredwilson

      I was reading up on miracast yesterday when I saw it was in chromecast

  28. mikenolan99

    Love it, bought one, came back for a comment.Can we talk content for a second? I’m all for advertising – hell, I used to be a broadcaster – commercials put many a meal on the table.But I HATE the way streaming networks are doing it.So a few days ago I’m catching up on Madmen, using the Xfinity Ap, and they show the SAME DAMN LINCOLN AD 9 TIMES AN EPISODE!And every other streaming show on Hulu or Xfinity show seems to be the same – streaming sucks because they show the same ad over and over… what a wasted opportunity!They owned me at that point. No doubt they know my income level, my car choices, and my location via cookies and history files.Yet they poisoned me to a brand. They could have created one hell of a engaged consumer, but instead wasted it through sheer laziness.Here’s my post on the subject – sorry for the rant. http://www.askbetterquestio

    1. CJ

      I like smart advertising. I have no idea why there isn’t a such thing as opt-in advertising where I voluntarily give you my information or interests in exchange for ads that I might actually want to see. I bet you could even offer me a visa card and still make a profit due to higher engagement. Hey Fred, you want to fund this?

      1. fredwilson


        1. CJ

          Well played.

    2. ShanaC

      advertisers haven’t fully exploited advertising online to the extent of their creative limit

      1. Matt A. Myers

        That costs money and is riskier – and it takes creativity, which costs money – so it’s easier to pump out the same.

        1. Alex Dunsdon

          Yes…brands (and comms agencies) just aren’t set up organisatonally to deliver more personalised syndicatable content. They’re set up to produce 1 x big spot. This will take time to change.

          1. Matt A. Myers

            Is anyone attempting this with regular positive results? Mind you I don’t imagine they’d be advertising their rate of return / success, but who knows..

      2. Techman

        Since most streaming services can be referred to as TV service, TV commercials shouldn’t be too bad of an advertisement to rotate.

    3. Techman

      What’s even more garbage than that is the fact that you still get ads in a streaming service. I personally wouldn’t tolerate it. For example, why should I pay for Hulu Plus if it’s going to feature ads, like it’s free version used to have before I think it was gutted.

    4. fredwilson

      Rant away!!!

  29. Colin Cowens

    Fred,, Allow me to say this with respect… You are one Android psycho.. Yesterday you dissed Apple and now this… Unfair.

    1. fredwilson

      I am looking to move to Firefox OSGonna get one of those Telefonica phones and use thatI just want to be where others arent

    2. kenberger

      I join Fred in the AP club (Android Psycho). At least as of 2013. (I was a Windows Mobile Psycho in 2008, for example). Short-term fiercely loyal is the way to go here.I’m the only one I know that actually loves Google TV (Vizio co-star). Now THAT takes some psycho.

  30. sigmaalgebra

    To me the ‘power’, the overwhelming power, that willwin is the combination of server farms, theInternet, Web browsers that support popular,powerful standards, e.g., HTML5, search engines(search, discovery, recommendation, curation,notification, subscription, etc.), client sideoperating systems that are ‘fully functional’,applications on the operating systems, a home LAN, ahome server, better computer security (sorry NSA),digital payments, and end user programmability.The main reason is, this combination hasoverwhelming power and is ‘one stop shopping’ forthe future of digital — entertainment, education,work, information, and whatever else in the futureof computing.E.g., for a user, it’s just one ‘thing’ for ‘systemmanagement’ — installation, configuration,monitoring, backup, maintenance, and restoration.E.g., it’s just one list for each of personalfavorite Web sites, recorded music performances, artimages, movies, academic video lectures, recipes,PDF reading, friends, carry out restaurants, etc.In some old words, it’s ‘single system image’ and,thus, e.g., is solving the problem of the poor richguy with three houses and two yachts on a Sundaynight quickly trying fix a toilet that won’t stoprunning and finding that his spare toilet parts arein one place, his plumbing tools in another, hishand cleaner in a third, etc.If in addition there are some low function, small,mobile client devices, then so be it, but they standto be ‘peripheral’ in nearly every sense. Moreover,for a given person there is a limit to how many suchdevices they can want to use — else they will be onsome five pound package ‘battery of the week’ planand “Honey, where the HECK is my recent supply ofAAA batteries; where is that VCR remote control forthat old movie we were going to watch (someoneshould outlaw silver oxide batteries since I can’tget mercury batteries for my Nikon)?”.Broadly we’re trying to teach nearly everyone towrite code. Well, clicking, clicking, clicking, Ihate all that clicking, and all that manual, ‘directmanipulation’ UI work — UX pain in the backside.Instead often I want to use some simple scriptinglanguage with access to APIs to control things.When I have the APIs to script, I usually DO.For any operating system that wants to play aleading role, e.g., Windows or Linux, it would helpif they would finally get some reasonable computersecurity up to date as of, say, Multics in 1970 sothat the operating system could run any applicationsat all, including deliberately malicious ones, withfull computer safety and security, e.g., like timesharing systems did for decades. Or, just go backto CP67/CMS of 1967 and offer virtual machines wherecan run, with full safety, any operating system atall running any applications at all. I know, wehave VMWare, etc., but we need an easy way to runeach application in its own virtual machine, likelyneed ‘pools’ (like relational database connectionpools) of virtual machines, etc.With such safety, people would be free to downloadand run apps of wide variety and not just a fewfamous apps, 10 years old and well vetted for safetyalthough likely still with vulnerabilities. Itwasn’t long ago that Microsoft was still fixingbuffer overflow vulnerabilities, which is one of themain lessons in the first week of introductorycomputer programming; after years and years not tofix even buffer overflow errors, their computersecurity people must have been spending most oftheir time in wild parties smoking funny stuff.That the mobile phones have safe ‘sandboxes’ hasbeen a very big thing.If there’s something wrong with Ballmer, he justdoes not, not, not ‘get it’ on client side computersecurity. Instead it’s very much as if he likessending out 50 MB of computer security patches eachmonth.For me, usually I want to interact with the mostcapable computer I can get, with the best, fullkeyboard, with the best, big screen. Everythingelse is ‘peripheral’.For TV, my cable TV company gave it to me for a yearfor negative money — that is, they paid me to taketheir set-top box. It’s right here and makes a goodclock. So far I’ve never connected a TV to it. Ideeply, profoundly, bitterly hate and despise TV. Igreatly prefer the Internet, e.g., Eric Landerlectures…or Elina Garancas singing Camille Saint Saens “Mon coeur s’ouvre ร  ta voix” from ‘Samson et Dalila’.at…or Otto Klemperer: Richard Wagner, “Prelude” to Act I, ‘Lohengrin’…with some nice ‘pre-Raphaelite’ still images,including a drop dead gorgeous strawberry blondIsolde (with the wimpy wuss Tristan on the rightwith his harp), a gorgeous red headed angel withhuge white wings (get her to guide my startup?),another drop dead gorgeous strawberry blondknighting a poor guy, maybe about to die in battle,and, the best of the drop dead gorgeous strawberryblonds, the one, with hair down to her waist,leaning over the stone railing sending a poor guy inarmor on a white house out of the castle to battle– for her maybe worth it! Gorgeous!Also Gundula Janowitz sings “Tosca – Vissi d’arte” (Puccini)…Pretty women: “Sull’aria Che soave zeffiretto” Dame Kiri Te Kanawa & Ileana Cotrubas sing “Sull’aria” from Mozart’s ‘Le Nozze di Figaro’…Also Mahler had a cello player Franz Schmidt: Intermezzo “Notre Dame” Erich Binder…which sounds like a poor guy who can’t getstrawberry blonds out of his mind! I like the vonKarajan performance better, and, while it’s beenremoved from YouTube, it’s available as MP3 fromAmazon.An overwrought (is there any other kind?)performance of this music, with very slow tempo andan organ, is at…Not nearly all the music I like is on YouTube, and Ihave a good CD collection. So, on my computer as a’lossless’ copy is the Heifetz performance of theBruch first violin concerto, and the second movementis a way to calm down after Wagner, Lohengrin, FranzSchmidt, and strawberry blonds!TV? High phooey.

  31. hypermark

    I have a meta-thesis on the game that Google and Apple are playing, and it’s professional sports, specifically the NBA Playoffs.In the NBA Playoffs, each team has a style that they want to play, that leverages their unfair advantages, and exploits the competition’s weaknesses, and there are a multitude of ‘games within the game’ and adjustments over the course of the series.So much of winning vs. losing is enforcing your desired style of play on the competition, thereby forcing them to forsake their competitive advantage.We can argue whether “Open” is better than “Integrated Experience,” or whether “Subsidized Pricing” (via Ads or Adjunct Business Models) is Preferred to “Direct Pricing” (i.e., Pricing is Direct Reflection of the Product).But what is absolutely fascinating to watch is one team (Google) trying to **force** the other team (Apple) to abandon or water down their strategy, so as to play Google’s game.Meanwhile, the other team (Apple) seems content to move merrily along playing their game without forcing the competition (Google) to capitulate from their game plan.Google is doing this by: – Pushing Free-to-Cheap;- Releasing a Mind-Numbing Diversity of Products, Makes and Models;- Reporting accelerating Android Counts (with little context);- Toggling between the Open Ecosystem and their own best-in-class Hardware-Software-Service;- Consistently Mixing Steak (the Ad Business, Search, Gmail, Maps) with Sizzle (Glass, Fiber, Loon, Cars).I’d actually argue that (on some level) it doesn’t matter if Chromecast is great or miserable; just that it represents a no-brainer “on-boarding” strategy for securing credit card backed users of Google Play.That’s the trojan horse to getting on equal footing with Apple and Amazon in terms of securing the almighty billing relationship with the mass consumer. Plus, it’s a natural “halo” for all things Google.Google is playing the game of “death by a thousand cuts,” simultaneously operating on offense and defense, whereas Apple seems to just be playing its game of focus, precision and execution.It feels like we are approaching the pivotal Game 5 of a Best-of-Seven series, and I’m not sure who is going to win, but it’s definitely Must See TV.

    1. fredwilson

      Fucking great comment

      1. hypermark


    2. fltron

      Love the comment. I see things a little differently though. Each forward making statement Google makes that it doesn’t succeed on (Google in every TV within 6 months, remember that comment a few years ago?), every product that doesn’t make it (Nexus Q anyone?), every strategy that fails (Android tablets), hurts Google’s credibility.I was a Nexus 7 buyer, excited about what Google can bring to the platform. Oops, that kind of sucked. People do still use the Nexus 7, but it was a no brainer for me when the iPad mini came out. Am I going to rush to get the new Nexus 7 after being burnt once? Nope! I distrust Google to present their best product first.If we were to use the sports theme here, I see Apple as the pro defending champ team that’s playing their game with confidence. I see Google as the jittery insecure team that can’t possibly win with a consistent strategy, so they are (as you said) trying literally everything in every iteration.The one thing you can be certain of, is when Apple enters a space they’re entering it with the best product they can design and manufacture. When Google enters a product, they’re entering it with whatever they can get out the door that they think might capture some market share (but probably won’t).Chromcast is likely to be another fringe product that losses support, and it’s not likely to out-sell Apple TVs in which case… why bother? Our community of techies here will buy ’em up. Just like I bought a Boxee Box when it first came out. Awesome device (though each code release seems to make it buggier). But it’s not mainstream.

      1. hypermark

        Fair take, and two thoughts.One, the Google device buyer seems to segment between two extremes: 1) Pre-disposed to all things Google for “philosophical reasons” (it’s open, doesn’t like what Apple represents, prefers variety, etc.); 2) Doesn’t know, doesn’t care (price is what matters most; good enough for my needs, etc).For this type of buyer, the Google strategy works until it flat-out doesn’t, which gives Google a lot of whacks at the piรฑata to get it right.In other words, their brand and perception of their products is far more sheltered from ready-fire-aim miscues than would be the case with a company like Apple, which is 100% measured on game-changing, breakout hits.Two, is that Google’s specific strategy seems titled towards the “seed,” “select” and “amplify” model, whereby you plant a lot of low-cost seeds, select the ones that sprout, discard the ones that don’t, and then amplify the winners through attention, resources and leverage.What they need to get better at (in my opinion) are ad hoc proclamations that seem ridiculous when they don’t come to pass (the don’t cry wolf axiom) and efforts where it feels like they don’t have their shit together.Case in point, announcing Chromecast with a three month credit on Netflix, and then killing the promo the same day based upon “overwhelming demand.”C’mon guys, you are Google. You mean that you had no scenario that anticipated overwhelming demand? ๐Ÿ™‚

    3. Barry Nolan

      Awesome input. *bows head to the wisdom*

    4. Global Highlander

      This is a very insightful comment, and a fitting metaphor.

    1. fredwilson


  32. William Orde

    This looks great, if I can ping stuff from my laptop / phone etc. onto the TV without the need for cables I would buy it immediately

  33. Morgan Warstler

    Noting the Boxee acquisition, the real immediate battle right now is Amazon, Google, and Apple versus the TV manufacturers.You can’t buy a high end dumb TV yet, the manufacturers are still trying to force their smart tech into the set.Putting smarts into the TV is a terrible consumer and industry choice. TV’s are a 7+ year product. TV smarts are on a 1.5 year curve at the most.I suspect Amazon is in the best position to arm twist a couple of set guys to deliver their very best screens in 50″+ form factors that function as monitors (with a QAM tuner).

    1. fredwilson

      the interesting company in this mix is Samsung. a hardware company for sure. but also a very strong player in mobile.

      1. Morgan Warstler

        My suggestion to Team Boxee, is that a Samsung HDMI dongle ought to be given away for free when you buy the S4 and S5.Give devs an integrated IR wifi platform.

  34. Joe Lazarus

    I’m curious to see if Chromecast can stream video and other large files to the TV without buffering issues. We use Airplay and Apple TV every day at work to mirror mobile devices & laptops to conference room TVs, but when I try to watch a video at home streamed from my iPhone or iPad to Apple TV, it skips and cuts out so much that it’s unusable.

  35. Lucas Dailey

    I love my Chromecast so far. The cast times are fast (predicting that will be the verb for sending something from one device to a screen), rendering great. Only hiccup I’ve seen so far is that I can’t seem to find how to cast a page from chrome on my new nexus 7. I believe I have everything up to date and loaded, but no Chromecast button in chrome on the tablet.Chromecast is the ideal user experience for this capability. I think Google just drank Boxee/Roku/etc’s milkshake.

    1. fredwilson

      boxee is no more sadly

  36. Brian Kurth

    Hi Fred, you may have seen this on Fast Company already today but just in case you didn’t….…We’re Roku users but I do want to check out Chromecast because I’m a frugal tech geek and $35 is a steal.