Chromecast with Google TV: The best Chromecast dongle yet

Google has officially announced Chromecast with Google TV—finally. After weeks of leaks, with units even being sold in the U.S. before the launch, Google has unveiled the full specs and pricing information for its latest Chromecast device.

As expected, the Chromecast with Google TV will feature some significant upgrades over past models. Most notably, it will run a rebranded version of Android TV (now called Google TV), as opposed to previous Chromecast dongles which only supported casting content via a compatible mobile device. This means that you’ll be able to use the new Chromecast dongle as a standalone device—much like the recently launched Mi TV Stick.

Google calls this the “best Chromecast yet”, and it’s hard to disagree. The dongle does most of what Android TV does, along with integration with some of Google’s services such as YouTube TV. However, you won’t be able to stream Google Stadia games—instead, this will only be to access Google’s game streaming service on the new Chromecast from the first half of 2021.

The look and design of the Chromecast with Google TV looks pretty much as we expected, thanks to a series of leaked images. The dongle is powered by USB-C, and you’ll need to hook it up to a wall adapter for enough juice.

The remote, meanwhile, utilises both IR and Bluetooth. You should be able to control compatible TVs and soundbars via IR, while Bluetooth is required to control the actual Chromecast with Google TV interface. Dedicated buttons for YouTube and Netflix are available, while a Google Assistant button will allow you to input voice commands via the remote.

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Like on Android TV OS, you should be able to sideload apps on the Chromecast with Google TV. However, do so at your own risk, and the safer option is to browse through Google’s vast library of over 6,500 apps. For starters, Disney+, HBO Max, Netflix, Peacock, and YouTube make up some of popular streaming apps that are available on Google TV.

The Chromecast with Google TV is now available in the U.S. for USD 49.99 (~RM207), with three colours available: Snow, Sunrise, and Sky. Pre-orders are also now open in Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Spain, and the U.K., with official sales to start on the 15th of October.

Chromecast with Google TV – USD 49.99 (~RM207)

Unless there’s a surprise, we don’t expect to see Google release their latest dongle in Malaysia. However, it’s pretty much certain that the new Chromecast will be imported by resellers—although you’ll need to ensure that you make purchases via trusted sellers only.

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