Interesting move by Amazon to kick out a couple of competing streaming media players. Chromecast and Apple TV are no longer being sold at Amazon.com. Clearly, Amazon wants to promote its own product, the Fire TV, as well as protect and promote its own Prime Video streaming service.
Google is coming out with a new version of Chromecast later this month. This is at the heels from an announcement Apple when it released the latest version of the Apple TV a few weeks ago. Chromecast is also competing with Amazon and Roku in the media streaming space. Details of the newer Chromecast have been sketchy, but rumors have been swirling around that the newer versions can connect to the faster wireless signals, namely 802.11ac.
Google is now selling $15 dollar ethernet adapter specifically for Chromecast. It’s for people who have unreliable WiFi connections, which is big damper if you’re streaming movies. The ethernet adapter comes with a power supply and a USB port where you connect the Chromecast device. In addition, the ethernet adapter will also provide power to Chromecast. At the moment, the ethernet adapter is only available in the USA, and is already sold out. Will you get one when it becomes available?
Google announced today that it’s adding Pandora to its short list of apps running on Chromecast. The list so far include Google Play Movies and TV, Google Play Music, YouTube, Netflix, Hulu Plus, and now Pandora.
Google can generate so much more interest from this popular streaming player if they release a few more apps like Spotify, IHeartRadio, access to major networks, cable networks like HBO, etc, and access to premium content in major league sports.
Most of all, Google should release an app for playing local media files soon. There’s a work around for playing local files now by simply dragging them into the Chrome browser, but the quality of the stream and speed are not quite there.
I’m not sure why Google is dragging their feet. Google is letting Roku, Apple TV and others react to the initial shock and novelty of the unique features of Chromecast when it was first introduced.
Eventually, competitors will come out with similar features, but the $35 price point is a major selling point for Chromecast in this tight competitive market.