Thanks to a sweet find by Mishaal Rahman over on Twitter/X, it looks like a new Chromecast with Google TV might be on the way sooner than later. We talked about some rumblings of a new device all the way back at the beginning of the year, but a new video that has surfaced in the Android TV 14 Beta seems to confirm this earlier report with an actual video of the outline of a new, updated Google TV remote.
While Google has yet to confirm a new model in the works, the time frame makes a lot of sense when you think about the fact that the original Chromecast with Google TV launched in 2020. In the time since, there has only been one additional version introduced by Google, and that was a less-powerful 1080p version for less money.
Then there’s the fact that Walmart has basically upended Google in this category with the latest Onn. Google TV device that gets you the full Google TV interface, similar internals, 4K, and a $19.99 asking price all day, every day. If you ask me, the time is right for Google to introduce something new.
From the images provided by Mishaal, we can see an elongated remote with more buttons and a curious star at the bottom. According to the tweet, it was previously discovered that Android TV 14 will provide a “magic button” customization that gives users the option to open a designated app or simply switch inputs for your TV. If the longer button on the right side is a volume rocker, then this remote won’t really have any extra buttons available compared with the old remote: it’ll just lay things out a bit differently.
What I’d love to see in a new Chromecast
This time around, I’d really love to see Google lean into some of the other stuff a Chromecast could be capable of. Give it a bit more storage, a bit more horsepower, and flatten out the remote a bit. The current one slips out of the hand like a bar of soap most days.
While I think they should put out two versions – a standard and high end model – the truth is most people wouldn’t use the extra power if they had it. But I still wonder if Android games could find a place on the big screen if Google made some hardware that was primed to play them. With GeForce NOW and some great, local Android games, a new (more powerful) Chromecast could be a real hub for entertainment.
Alas, as even Apple doesn’t see much use of their streaming devices for gaming (even thought they are pretty capable), I don’t see Google going down this path. What I’d love to see is better GeForce NOW performance, and that largely comes down to Bluetooth latency with controllers. If they make that a priority and GeForce NOW is running smoothly, they could really lean into cloud gaming with the new Chromecast in a pretty big way.
As it stands, we’re not quite sure what to expect, but Google needs to be aggressive. With the Onn. Google TV being so good, showing up with a slight update and a $49.99 price tag will be a swing and a miss. If they want to keep charging that kind of money, they’ll need to work out some features that make the extra cost worth it, and at this point in the home entertainment game, I’m unsure exactly what those would be. Hopefully, we’ll know soon enough.