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9,939 of 10,374 people found the following review helpful
on July 27, 2013
I actually ordered a Chromecast the day it was announced from Google. However the next day, I was told that they were available for purchase at bestbuy. I was anxious to try it out so I went and bought another one and gave it a try.

Setup was easy and within 5 minutes, I was watching a youtube video on my 65" TV. The quality was VERY good. I tried a 1080p video first "Big Buck Bunny" and it looked, played and sounded wonderful. Next, was playing music from my Google Play music app. Same result, the music sounded great.

I moved on to my Macbook Pro, and again, the videos was clear, without lag, no audio sync problems at all. Same for my Windows PC.

Those considering buying the Chromecast should consider what the Chromecast actually is and does, instead of what they wish it could do. So here are some facts:

1. The Chromecast is not a streaming device of local digital content. In other words, it does NOT play digital music and videos that is stored locally on your network drives or computers. However there is a work-around for this:

Use PLEX Media Server. If you don't already have it, here's the link:

[...]

Once you download it and point it to your files,it will act as a proxy and allow your music and videos to be played on your HDTV using the Chromecast through the Chrome browser. Simply launch the PLEX Media Manager in Google Chrome browser. Pick a file to play, Hit the Google Cast button and you'll get seamless playback of your own files. [Edit: Please see comments to see an alternative method].

2. The Chromecast is not a DLNA or Miracast device or Apple's airplay. This is a lot like my number 1 fact, but I wanted to make this clear. If you want device mirroring (display whatever is on the device's screen), the Chromecast, is NOT for you. The video and music does NOT stream from the controller device (Your computer, tablet, smartphone). Chromecast works by fetching the content from a website or cloud service itself, NOT from the device you're using. Here's what's cool about that:

A. You could start playing a video using your smartphone,tablet,computer as a "remote" and still be able to browse the web, play a game, check your social apps, write a book report, put the device to sleep,turn the device completely off (I tried this myself), or leave the house, and the video WILL still play without issues.

B. Your battery life is saved! Because your phone, tablet or computer (not plugged in)is not actually streaming to the Chromecast, your battery consumption is minimal. You could Play dozens of movies over several days and still have most of your battery life remaining (Of course this would depend on what else you do with the phone, tablet or computer and how long your device can stay in standby).

C. Every device connected to the Chromecast on the same network can take control of playback, adding to the queue (what's going to play next). Pause, fast forward, rewind, etc. So if your roommate, friend, parent, sibling, spouse, girlfriend/boyfriend has to leave with their device, you don't have to worry.

D. You can play content from thousands upon thousands of sources using your computer. Using Google Chrome, nearly every webpage, that has content can be viewed using Chromecast. Of Course, this depends what protocols the site is using. If the site has trouble playing on your computer, then it probably won't work well on the Chromecast, either.

3. Chromecast IS cross platform (works with multiple devices). As I said, I tried it with several devices with different operating systems. At the time of this review, it works on Windows PC's, Macbooks, and android devices. The app for iOS devices is coming soon. Everyone knows the Apple App store has stringent policies and at times, it can be a long process. Look at the Onlive game streaming app. We won't get into how Apple has been trying to eradicate google applications from it's ecosystem anyway. I'm sure the app is waiting for approval. Just be patient. [Edit: Please see comments for a reply to it working on iOS devices].

There are several youtube videos that can show you how to set it up or how well it works. I made a video myself:

[...]

Watching my video isn't required, but it does help to verify what I'm saying.

4. The device you use with the Chromecast, must be on the same WIFI network. The important word here is WIFI. If you are trying to use it, with a ethernet (wired) connected device, even though it's on the same network, it will NOT work! Yes, that sucks, but not being able to use sink water in your gas tank, kind of sucks to. If that's a deal breaker for you, then you shouldn't purchase it. It's how they chose to implement it's use. It is, what it is. [Edit: Please see comment section].

5. The Netflix 3 months free limited time offer is over! I received 3 months free with both my purchases. I live in the eastern time zone. Even though I bought my second Chromecast on July 25th at 6:46pm. I realize that when the offer was no longer available, it should have been posted immediately so that consumers could factor that into their decision to buy the Chromecast. Instead of calling it a limited time offer, they should have said "while supplies last." Never the less, the features and functionality of this device has nothing to do with the inadequacy of a bonus offer. To help people make a decision about a future purchase and if it will work for THEM in the home configuration they have, is paramount in my book.

6. The Chromecast REQUIRES power through USB connection or from your wall outlet. The required peripherals ARE provided to you in the retail box. Some people are saying if you have an HDMI 1.4 compatible port on the back of your TV, the device can be powered by the HDMI port alone, without the USB cord connected. I CANNOT speak to that, as my HDMI ports did NOT power the Chromecast. I had to use the provided USB wire and connect it to a USB port available on the back of my TV.

Overall, I'm extremely pleased with the purchase. I've read some of the other reviews, particularly the 1 and 2 star reviews, because it's an indicator of what can possibly go wrong with the device. I would suggest that people make their decision based on people that have actually bought the device and have experience connecting, setting it up and ACTUALLY using the device. Most of the bad reviews are from people that have not used it, didn't understand the features of the device, or, to be honest, has a problem with the competition between Apple and Google and wants to dismiss this product because of their affinity for Apple products. Look at the features and functions of this device and consider them for yourself.

I hope this review helps someone who may be considering this device.

EDIT: Recently more apps were added with chromecast support, including the PLEX app! Other editions are: HBO Go, Hulu Plus, Pandora, Vevo, Redbull.tv, Songza, Post TV, Viki, Real Player Cloud.
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7,167 of 7,845 people found the following review helpful
on July 24, 2013
So I have no idea why Amazon decided to remove my 1500+ Helpful Review. I have had this product for weeks so I was able to give more than just a short term insight. In fact, I like the idea of it so much that I ordered two additional through Amazon yesterday before they sold out (Google only gave me one to test with).

Anyway, I was contacted by fellow Amazon shoppers to repost it - so here it is:

I want to provide an honest review with an actual understanding of what and how the product works having had it for a couple weeks, without violating my NDA.

Look - you can give your "Review" once you have in your hands. Make assumptions based off an uneducated guess or incorrect information just looks stupid, I'm sorry.

What it Is:
It's a HDMI dongle that is powered by Chrome OS that is designed for Streaming.

How it Works:
You have to connect to the same Wi-Fi network for it to work. Once it's setup you'll see the Chromecast logo and a basic Home Screen with some of the first apps available for Chromecast. A lot of development is going into it, so expect to see more apps from the Google Play store work with your TV. See your phone/tablet/computer more of a remote, rather than an actual streaming device.

I only tested on the iOS side (I don't have a Droid) and I can tell you that it works very well. It is NOT like Apple's AirPlay where your screen is mirrored, but rather uses "the Cloud" to access your content. It works smoother than AirPlay because it doesn't require buffering from your device, but rather directly to the TV. The only "syncing" that occurs is the Cloud communicating to the Chromecast where you're at. For example: I'm watching a Netflix movie and I'm at 1:06:17. I hit the Square button with the wi-fi looking icon called "Cast" and it syncs it to my Chromecast. This is only different for web-browsing through the currently Beta Chrome Tab Cast, where it'll show exactly what you're looking on Chrome, onto your TV. It's less functional than straight up mirroring like the Apple TV, but it works. You can't switch between apps and have that show on the screen. This is particularly useful in web-based presentations or while you check your email and your friends are watching Netflix.

Battery Drain on Mobile Devices:
Because of the way Chromecast works, it's streaming information from the Cloud vs. from your device. I noticed very little increase in the usage of battery on my iPhone 5 and my Macbook Air running Mountain Lion OSX.

Support for Streaming Services:
Right now, Streaming Service support is limited. Netflix, Google Services (Google Play, YouTube) and Web-based Streaming is allowed. I had issues trying to load Hulu the past couple days, telling me that my browser was unsupported, but I'll update once I get a chance.

Power Adapter:
The power adapter is an optional requirement. In fact, most modern TV's with HDMI 1.4 or higher spec are supported. The Chromecast can draw power from the HDMI port it's plugged into. If your TV doesn't support that, there's also a USB cable and power adapter included in the box. I have a 2012 LG LED and a 2013 Lenovo 27" Monitor with HDMI input and the ports power it with no cable.

All in all, I feel like it's still a huge work in progress. The SDK will allow for some exciting developments, and I'm happy to say that Google has committed to support this device for quite some time. It gives me piece of mind that this won't become out of date each year.

That being said, it's only $35. What a steal for a device that really brings value to any TV.
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1,217 of 1,341 people found the following review helpful
on September 12, 2013
Pros:
1. Relatively inexpensive ($35) compared to other options (Roku, Apple TV,...)
2. Easy to setup (takes only 5 min)
3. Can control using multiple devices (smartphone, PC, tablet) on multiple platforms (iOS, Android, Windows)
4. Can stream anything on the Chrome browser (duplicating what's on screen)
5. Can cue up multiple play items
6. Doesn't consume battery on the smartphone (initiate streaming and move on to do other things or even put the phone in suspension mode
7. 3rd party apps will continue to make this device more useful and will eventually allow streaming of anything on the PC or phone to the TV
8. Tiny footprint that can easily hide away in the back of TV (if the TV has a USB port, then the device can be powered by a USB cable without a power supply connected to the wall outlet)
9. Can connect it to an audio device/receiver and stream Spotify or Pandora continuously without turning on the TV- this is a very good feature!
10. No additional service fee or subscription fee other than services that you choose to pay for (such as Netflix or Google Play)

Cons:
1. Doesn't support any local storage media directly (you can connect the storage media to your PC/laptop or smartphone and stream from there if necessary, though)
2. No remote controller (you can use your PC/smartphone as a remote, though)
3. ... can't think of any more cons!
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383 of 471 people found the following review helpful
on July 25, 2013
Just got the unit in the mail and set it up. Set up is a breeze: you plug it in to HDMI, plug in the USB for power (either to the TV or to the included USB power plug), connect to its ad-hoc network via the chromecast app and then it's good to go.

Content is currently limited to: Google Play media, YouTube, Netflix, and tabs from Chrome browsers on Windows, Mac, and Chromebook (Pixel only at this time). Pandora is coming but not available yet. Content must come from the internet at current and does not support local file streaming (except in a loophole where you can load local files in to a chrome tab, those will be streamed).

The streaming functions work really well, there's a small small delay since the device acts as a remote more or less. Web browsing, which is in beta form, is noticeably laggy. Slower than direct streaming (e.g. WiDi, AirPlay or Miracast) but that's due to again, it working more like a remote. It all works very well and if you have any experience with AirPlay from iOS/Mac you'll be used to how it works from an end user standpoint. Technically it works differently as again AirPlay streams from device to AppleTV or similar device, Chromecast doesn't send content from the phone to the Chromecast directly but instead allows the Chromecast device to pull the content from the internet/cloud. The negative of this is no direct mirroring and limits functionality to application specific implementations BUT it allows the device to be turned off or removed from the network or other tasks to be done on the device. So it's an interesting comparison.

So what's not so good: It's limited to 2.4GHz wireless, which is slower and more congested than 5GHz spectrum. It does support 802.11 N at least. The selection of content/apps needs work, but it's brand new and will get better - hopefully.

But here's the great thing. It only costs $35. Not only that, but if you ordered soon enough it comes with 3 months of Netflix for new OR existing customers (although limited to one code per account so if you buy multiples you'll get multiple codes but can only personally use one of them). When you factor that in you're getting $23.97 of a service you're probably already paying for. The puts the net cost of the device at just $11.03 plus tax. Eleven Dollars!! If you weren't lucky enough to order by then - it's not as good a deal but the device is still worth $35. If you only use this thing a small handful of times, just to quickly stream a chrome tab up on your TV or to watch a youtube video it's worth it. But with how well this has been selling I imagine we'll be seeing more apps support it soon.

Pros:
+++ Cost - $35 or $11 depending on when you ordered
++ Cross platform (Android 2.3 or higher, iOS 6 or higher, Chrome for Windows, Mac, Chromebook)
+ Easy setup
+ Small/portable (just need to bring the USB power and the device)
+ includes HDMI extension, usb cable, and usb power supply (amazing for the cost)

Cons:
- Limited content for now (no local content either)

Overall, again it's not perfect. I'd love to have seen 5GHz wireless support and I want more content/apps and I'd love to see some direct streaming or an easy way to get photos streamed (I hear you can do videos but haven't tested yet). But for $11 I'll bet on the future of the device.

-= Notes on content source =-
I've seen on forums that people have questions about streaming from your device or the playback of local files. Chromecast, in the current form, does NOT support streaming of local content. The source for all content must be online, your phone/tablet is used for content discovery and control/credentials ONLY. There's a loop hole to this in that local files can apparently be opened in a chrome tab and then displayed via Chromecast but this is an exception (see: [...]

See the image on this post for a visual representation: [...]

-= Notes on power source =-
Also for clarity, the pictures that Google uses to show the device plugged in to the TV neglect to show the USB cable attached for power. HDMI is not capable of supplying enough power and as such you need to use the included USB cable to power the device (some TVs have a USB port for debugging/update purposes that can be used). Some reviewers are pointing out that HDMI can power it but it cannot. HDMI only supplies 5V @ 50mA, you'd need roughly 10 times that power (5V @ 500mA) to power this. The included charger is rated for 5V @ 800mA which goes a long way to supporting that HDMI alone cannot power the device. As a side note: MHL ports could power the device but I can't find any confirmation that this supports MHL.

To some of you this may seem trivial/obvious but I've had more than one friend ask for clarification about this so I thought it might be of important note here. They did a good job of explaining this at the press event but apparently not as well elsewhere.

-= Notes on comparison =-
Roku/PS3/360/AppleTV/etc - This isn't meant to compete directly with these, yet. Content is too limited for now. This is changing and should get better. A key distinction is the mechanics of it. While it presents itself as something similar to AirPlay it functions as more of a hybrid between AirPlay and using a remote app (Roku, SmartGlass, Remote, etc) on your smart device. Essentially the content comes from the internet/cloud - the device is used for content discovery and control of the content but the content comes from the internet. Another key distinction is cost. Even at Roku's cheapest this is still 80% cheaper (after netflix cost factored out). Even if this is the full $35, it's still roughly 1/3 the cost of Apple TV.

If you already have one, or more, of the devices (I do) the utility of this device is a little more limited in terms of uniqueness but there's one very very key difference, one I'm excited for, and some unique overlaps. With Roku or PS3, your account (e.g. Netflix) has to be tied into the device. So someone visiting has to sign in on their account or use your account. This isn't ideal. But with Chromecast as long as they're signed in on their device (Android/iOS) they can connect to wireless and see the Chromecast and then stream from their own account. This makes it a perfect device for visitors and will ultimately replace my use of a Roku in my guest room for this EXACT reason. While AppleTV with AirPlay rivals this it has two drawbacks: it's iOS only and doesn't allow the streaming device to be used for anything else or to have the screen turned off. The cross platform nature alone is a notable distinction and again a welcome idea for guests. The fact that with Chromcast your phone/tablet can do other things or have their screen turned off will save battery.

So while the distinctions aren't as explicit - arguably on the face it functions much like a cross platform Apple TV would in certain cases - the subtle differences add to it. Content discovery (and account info) come from the iOS/Android device but do not require that device to be on/active/present to continue streaming and can be picked up/resumed from another device. Again, these issues don't exist with Roku/PS3 but in those cases your account has to be used on the Roku/PS3 - Chromecast allows for easy user swapping and multiuser control. So while it's hard, on the face, to see the distinction it's there. It's that overlap of features included in a single device that drives this as a unique thing. While it may not be much, for the few dollars it costs it could be of use in those specific scenarios. If you already have multiple devices (e.g. AppleTV and PS3) and don't see specific use in that distinction or cross platform nature then it's likely not for you but I'd bet for $11 you'll find some use for it.

-= Questions =-
If you have any questions about the device, technology, experience or anything I can try and test let me know in the comments and I'll do my best to answer as soon as possible.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on May 26, 2015
I'll get to my review of the Chromecast in a minute, but first, I want to describe a Chromecast issue that I *just* experienced, and share how I resolved it:

After several months of working *flawlessly*, both of the Chromecasts in my house completely stopped working. When I say "stopped working", I mean that they were displaying the photo slideshow on screen as usual, but none of the devices in my house could "find" either Chromecast on the WiFi network. When I tried resetting both, and then configuring each from scratch, I wasn't able to complete the setup process. I was baffled, so I turned to Google's support forums.

The answer? RESET YOUR WIRELESS ROUTER. (In my case, this meant unplugging it for about 30 seconds or so, and then plugging it back in.) As soon as I did that? *BOOM* Problem fixed. All of my devices now recognize both Chromecasts!

I'm still not sure if the issue was the result of a Chromecast update or a router update (pushed out by my ISP), but resetting it by cutting the power for a few seconds completely fixed the issue. So, if you're having similar issues, maybe try that first.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Alright, so here's my Chromecast REVIEW, which I'll gear toward total BEGINNERS:

---So what is this thing?---
The Chromecast is a USB dongle - created by Google - that plugs into the back of your TV. Its purpose is to allow audio or video content (TV shows, music, movies, YouTube videos, lectures, etc.) to be streamed via your wireless Internet connection (wifi), from the Internet, into the Chromecast. The Chromecast then displays the content via your TV and/or its speakers.

---How do you control it? Does it come with a remote?---
Nope. There's no remote. Basically, what you do is this: You navigate to the thing you want to watch or listen to using a device in your house (usually a device that's on the same wireless network as the Chromecast).

So, for example:
* You might browse to a YouTube video using the YouTube app on your smartphone. Then, if you want to watch that video on your TV, you tap a little icon in your YouTube app, and the phone then hands the video off to the Chromecast, which proceeds to start showing the same YouTube video on the screen. If you want to pause, fast-forward, or rewind the video as it's playing on the TV, you use controls which will appear on your smartphone.

Another example:
* Let's say you normally watch a particular show on Hulu Plus or Netflix right on your laptop, but you'd rather watch it on the TV. To do this, you'd start the video on your laptop like usual, and then - when you want to watch it on your TV - you'd click a little Chromecast icon on your monitor, which will hand off the show to the Chromecast, which will then cause the show to appear on your TV. Again, if you want to pause, fast-forward, or rewind the video, while it's playing on the TV, you'd use the controls that would appear on-screen on your laptop.

---So hold on... I need another device to control the Chromecast?---
Yup. To control the content that you display on the Chromecast, you'd need a wifi-enabled laptop, smartphone, or tablet. Preferably, your laptop, smartphone, or tablet would be connected to the same wifi network as your Chromecast (your home wifi / wireless internet connection, for instance).

---What kind of stuff can I watch?---
Lots. Apparently, it's pretty easy for a software developer to add Chromecast compatibility (which is what adds the little Chromecast icon I talked about above) to their application, so lots of things are Chromecast-compatible. Unfortunately, Amazon Prime video streaming isn't yet, but Netflix, Hulu Plus, HBO Go, YouTube, Pandora, and a bunch more are all already compatible. This means that if you have a device that can play any of those things natively (on the device itself), then you can probably use that device to "cast" (i.e. hand things off to) the Chromecast, and watch / listen to that content via your TV... provided you have a Chromecast plugged into the back of it. So yeah... Google maintains a list of all of the services that are compatible, so I suggest checking to see if your preferred services are supported.
(Link: https://www.google.com/chrome/devices/chromecast/apps.html )

---So how does this thing compare to the Roku or Fire TV?---
The Roku (including the Roku Streaming Stick) and Fire TV (including the Fire TV Stick ) can do many of the same things as the Chromecast, but in reality - because they don't require the use of external devices - and because they come with their own remotes - the Roku and Fire TV really are different animals. In some regards, they are better than the Chromecast, but in some regards, the Chromecast is better.

How the Chromecast is better:
* PRICE - Obviously, the Chromecast is one of the cheapest - if not THE cheapest options, so that's a huge advantage of the Chromecast.
* PORTABILITY - If you wanted, you could easily unplug the Chromecast and bring it with you to a vacation house or a relative's house (assuming said house has wireless internet), and it would almost be plug and play.
* EASY SHARING - Let's say you're sitting in a living room, and you find a YouTube video on your laptop, and want to show your spouse / kids / sibling / friend. With the Chromecast, you can just send that content directly to the TV, without having to look it up (i.e. browse for the video again) via a separate app. Oh... and did I mention that this also works with websites? That's right - if you're using the Google Chrome browser on your computer, you can "cast" a web browser tab right to the TV. This is perfect for those "Oh! Let me show you this article" moments.

How the Roku or Fire TV are better:
* CONTROLS - As described above, the Chromecast requires you to use one of your existing devices - your smartphone, tablet, or computer - as the "remote" for the Chromecast. In contrast, the Roku and Fire TV have their own remotes, which many people will prefer - especially in situations where a smartphone, tablet, etc. are unavailable.
* LEAN BACK EXPERIENCE - This one is a bit more difficult to describe - and is kind of tied to the "controls" item above, so bear with me here. In addition to having their own dedicated remotes, the Roku and Fire TV just feel a bit more immersive. In other words, because you can just set your phone / laptop / tablet aside while you watch (because you don't need to use it to control the show / movie / music / whatever), you might find consuming content via the Roku or Fire TV a bit less complex. Both the Roku and Fire TV have pretty decent interfaces, so both make browsing for content and navigating from app to app pretty easy, compared to the experience of controlling content via a second screen (e.g. YouTube app on your smartphone).
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on January 10, 2014
We just got this gizmo ($29.95 with Prime 2-day shipping) and already have watched the latest Downton Abbey online, on our TV. There are a number of web sites that have videos that are not in Vimeo or Youtube that we are interested in. Also audio casts. All of these are now available to us on our TV (convenient) with Chromecast using Google Chrome browser.

The video and sound quality is not usually as good as HD TV or DVDs but it has been quite good enough to watch full length videos. The most useful application to us is viewing and listening to media from sites that aren't included in Blu-ray or Roku (Sony Blu-ray seems to have more than Roku now.)

Chromecast setup is almost automatic and very easy. This along with the Sony BDP-S5100 Blu-ray player gives us access to more than we are likely to view.

From a Cruft blog:

"From the start with Chromecast, set-up is simple. You need a Wi-Fi computer to download the set-up software and here is where it gets good. I think most consumer broadband routers come with WEP, WPA, or WPA enabled by default and before you connect to the wireless network, the device has to be configured--usually just selecting the SSID and key is sufficient. With the Chromecast, the only way to connect is via Wi-Fi but if it can't get on the Wi-Fi network, where do you start?

Simple, the installer disconnects your laptop from your Wi-Fi network and (I think) puts it into ad-hoc mode so that it can connect to Chromecast. Once it connects, the application selects the last SSID your laptop used under the assumption that Chromecast will connect to that SSID as well (and you can change it) and then you can have the application automatically pull in the WEP/WPA, WPA2 key used to connect to the SSID. I didn't need to do enter a key. Once the configuration is set, Chromecast connects to your Wi-Fi network and the application restores your last Wi-Fi profile and then verifies it can communicate with Chromecast.

Anyone can set-it up. I'd feel comfortable giving this to my mother and letting her do the set-up. I have a very strong feeling that the Google engineers could have simplified the process further by simply disconnecting from the WLAN, grabbing the last SSID and Key, and then reconnecting the LAN with out any user interaction and been right 99% of the time. It would make sense.

Using Chromecast is also simple. I launched Youtube on my Sammy found a video and pushed it to Chromecast. Simple. Easy. Idiot proof."

I've submitted 3 customer images to illustrate how to show full screen mode from a site like PBS (see customer images) I hope this helps.
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1,062 of 1,326 people found the following review helpful
on September 21, 2013
It works great with youtube, netflix and basic web browsing, but not Amazon. Nor is it compatible with the Kindle Fire HD.
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69 of 84 people found the following review helpful
As soon as I saw Google released this item and it costs $11 after Netflix code, I didn't think twice to buy it.

Got my Chromecast yesterday and hooked it up with my TV really easy setup. It works with most of the websites I watch streaming videos. I noticed at few instances there was a slight delay in video between laptop and TV. I noticed videos got stuck at few instances and it adjusted by itself after few seconds, think my wi-fi connection drop.

Before Chromecast I used to connect my laptop using HDMI cable which wasn't long enough to bring laptop to couch and ugly cable hanging out of my TV. Now this reduced cable clutter and solves my issue with just $11, no one can beat that price factor.

Five stars for the price, usability and does what I expect it to do.
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597 of 760 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon July 31, 2013
I was excited when I read that Chromecast would allow me to cast anything from my chrome browser to the tv. Since I've already got a Roku HD Streaming Player (and because not everything I watch is on Netflix), that was really the only feature I really cared about. Given that I ordered early enough for the Netflix promotion, I thought it was worth the $11 investment.

Despite my interest in casting Chrome from my computer, my first trial was casting Netflix from my phone. It worked beautifully, and I was very happy with my purchase... until I got around to casting from Chrome. That was an utter failure. We've got enough bandwidth that streaming video has never been a problem, either on the computer or through the Roku. But stream to the computer and Chromecast to the tv, and suddenly stops and starts so much, it's unwatchable. In the moments when it's playing instead or pausing, the video doesn't even match the audio.

I still think the Chromecast has potential if more developers start incorporating it, and it works well if all you watch is Netflix and YouTube. But if you want to stream video via Chrome, Chromecast won't cut it.

UPDATE: Just a few additional notes, based on comments posted by other users.
1. Chrome tab casting is in beta. Thanks, for the reminder. Let's hope it gets better.
2. Computer performance can significantly impact quality of casting. Our macbook is several years old, so that could be a contributing factor.
3. Video quality settings can improve the performance. We tried the low resolution setting. It improved the performance but not to the point of making it watchable.

SECOND UPDATE: I'm not sure if there have been upgrades to the firmware or if it's because I've been careful to make sure all other programs and browser tabs are closed before starting a video, but I've been having more luck with streaming video via Chrome. We use it regularly now, and, although it still has issues, it's no longer "unwatchable." It freezes or produces mismatched video and audio most times we use it, but those issues rarely occur more than once (sometimes twice) in an hour-long show (I do have to restart the video whenever this happens). Given the problems we still have, we don't even bother trying the HD stream. But if other users are having trouble, definitely make sure your computer isn't trying to do anything else while Chrome is casting, and that may help. Although it's still not perfect, it's performing quite capably for a $35 piece of equipment.
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29 of 34 people found the following review helpful
on April 14, 2015
I recieved some piss poor chinese replica... THIS IS NOT A CHROMECAST. Took about 3 weeks to recieve and to my display the brand is "wescast". Thoroughly disappointed. Better off buying in store, what you physically see is what you get, instead of this BS. USERS PLEASE READ AND RE CONSIDER THIS PURCHASE. SPEND THE EXTRA $10 AND BUY THIS IN STORE. I am returning this pos and buying a kindle fire sitck IN STORE
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