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By: Kaitlin Pondolfino

In comparison to Microsoft’s (now outdated) WebTV, is the new and improved Google Chromecast. Created for a similar purpose, both of these are meant to turn your TV into a usable computer in order to stream shows, movies, and videos. WebTV had its downfalls – the screen sat far away, the resolution wasn’t as clear as anticipated, and no one wants to add a keyboard or pointing device to their already existing pile or remote controls. Well, that was then and this is now.

Last Wednesday, at a Google Press Conference in San Francisco, Google announced Chromecast – a tiny computer running a stripped-down version of Google Chrome. In addition to streaming music and showing photos, Chromecast is able to stream Netflix and YouTube videos to your TV from any iPhone, Android device or notebook computer. This eliminates the “lean-forward” experience of hunching over a laptop and allows for the desirable “lean-back” experience of comfortably watching television from your living room.

The device itself looks similar to a USB thumb drive and simply plugs into a TV’s HDMI port. The only other piece of required equipment is a small USB electrical brick which provides power to the Chromecast adapter and plugs into a wall jack. Everything necessary in order for Chromecast to be up and running quickly and efficiently comes neatly packaged together with easy instructions.

While some comparable devices are expensive, complicated, and quickly outdated, Chromecast is only a shocking $35. Between the gadget’s affordable price, positive reviews, and easy set-up, it’s been said that Chromecast is at least worth a try! One consumer said a total of 15 minutes worth of set up resulted in a pleasant and user-friendly experience. Chromecast allows for family and friends to (remotely free) watch movies, TV shows, music, Netflix, YouTube, Google Play, and Chrome together. It works with devices you already own including smartphones, iPads, etc. so you won’t have to learn or purchase anything new. So plug and play with Google’s new Chromecast!

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