Yesterday Google unveiled not one, but TWO all-new Chromecasts for 2015. One was an updated version of the previous HDMI dongle, while a new one dealt with all things audio…conveniently named the Chromecast Audio.
Since James and I have had 24 hours to digest the information and calm our emotions, it is time for our rapid reaction to Google’s new Chromecast Audio.
Like the Chromecast of yesteryear, the new Chromecast Audio is designed very well. It is incredibly simple. The Chromecast Audio has just three ports built-in. Those ports include one for power, a headphone jack, and a digital optical out. Literally the only things would would ever need.
I first thought the design was a bit lacking because when I first saw it from a distance, the Chrome logo on top sort of reminded me of the Beats logo. However, after 24 hours of sitting on it, I have come to realize that they designed the Chromecast Audio to look like a vinyl record. Ok that is pretty cool. Now I understand the all-black Chrome logo.
I also like the vibrant yellow auxiliary cable. First of all it will be hard to lose because it is so bright. Second, I like vibrant things with tech. All too often you only have white or black to choose from.
The Chromecast Audio is compatible with Android 4.1 and higher, iOS 7 and higher, Windows 7, and Mac OSX 10.7. Sorry Ubuntu phone and Windows Phone users.
Even though it isn’t available on Windows Phone, it still is compatible with probably 90% of devices out there.
Google promises that both new Chromecasts will be easier to setup. This is a good thing because sometimes it was a hassle to pair my Chromecast to new networks.
This is pretty much the only thing that makes me scratch my head.
WiFi is great and all, but why could they have included Bluetooth with the Chromecast Audio? Sometimes Bluetooth is just darn easier to connect with instead of needing a network.
What if you are in a part of your house that has a terrible WiFi signal? Now to solve the problem you either have to get a new router, a signal extender or just take a sledgehammer and break down one of the walls/floors.
Just seems odd.
For myself personally I love the fact that the new Chromecast Audio connects via WiFi rather than Bluetooth. I’m just about to purchase a house and with that I’m excited to figure out what I’m going to do with all the technology available. Just the ability to blast music in the living room while cooking in the kitchen without having to go back into the room to change a song is an exciting prospect, especially at that price point.
They made it look like a record. You can’t really beat that in terms of design.
Having just become a user of Spotify in the past few months, I was disheartened to see that the original Chromecast had no support for Spotify. Luckily that’s changed with both the 2nd gen Chromecast and the Chromecast Audio and I couldn’t be happier. Having more options as to what you can do with this little gadget only makes it a stronger product.
The lack of Bluetooth bites but I can only see this being an issue if you have poor WiFi in your home. Look, I had to pick something for our Head Scratchers section and so there you have it. My only possible gripe at the moment.
Having yet another device that allows you to spread your sticky technology fingers all over everything can only be a good thing and at the price point of $35, I see Google really striking big with it’s new collection of devices to smarten up your dumb tech.
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