Hard to believe but our favorite streaming dongle turned four today. July 24, 2013, Google announced the 1st generation Chromecast device would go on sale for $35. Since that time, the birth of the tiny wonder has spawned an audio-only model, a second-generation Chromecast and now, the Chromecast Ultra offering 4K and HDR playback.
— Made by Google (@madebygoogle) July 24, 2017
The unassuming device began its life as a stripped-down version of Chrome OS that supported the proprietary Google Cast protocol. In February of 2014, Google released the Google Cast SDK to third party developers so that they could add Chromecast support to their software.
While very few apps were supported at inception, the beauty of the Chromecast was and still is its simplicity. This tiny dongle would let you mirror content from the Chrome browser on your desktop as well as some Android devices. Not to mention the setup was stupidly simple and the device can hide behind a soda can.
Fast forward to 2017 and you can find three Chromecast devices in the Google Store but more importantly, Chromecast built-in is becoming the rule, not the exception. Televisions, portable speakers, soundbars, heck even LG took a shot at an Ultra-wide monitor with Chromecast built-in.
This time last year, Google had sold over 3 million of these things and that doesn’t count all the Cast-enabled, third-party products. There are also Chromecast-ready apps in the tens of thousands available at your fingertips via Android or iOS. That’s a lot of casting.
At this rate, the Chromecast’s popularity could ultimately slump sales as more and more devices have Casting baked right in. However, the fact remains, Chromecast hast cemented its place in the streaming media market and it is here to stay regardless the form fact.
So, from Chrome Unboxed we just wanted to say, Happy Birthday Chromecast. Here’s to many more years as our go-to streaming dongle.