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Chromecast: All you need to know

Digital media player, Chromecast is a small dongle developed by Google for accessing playbacks from mobile device or computers on high definition TVs. The device controls/initiate the playback of internet streamed audio and visual content on TVs through mobile or web Apps. The device supports Google cast for mirroring of content on HD TV's.

Google Cast SDK is a third party modification software which was released on 3rd Feb, 2014. Third party Apps can use google cast for enabling their apps to be accessible through Chromecast on high definition Tvs. After the release, 20,000 google cast ready apps were sold till May 2015. 30 million units of Chromecast are sold till now in US making it the best seller streaming device in US in 2014.

There are three Chromecast device launched till now:
1. Chromecast 1st Generation
2. Chromecast 2nd Generation
3. Chromecast 3rd Generation

Chromecast 1st Generation
It is the first Chromecast device announced on July 24,2013 and was made available for purchase on the same day in US at $35. This device has a HDMI port which is to be connected to the HD screen and has a small USB port through which Chromecast is connected to the power cable which is further connected to the adapter or the USB port available. This device casts the video from mobile or computers to the high definition TVs thus enabling users to view content being played on mobile or computer on big screens thus enhancing the user experience.

Chromecast 2nd Generation
This device was released in September, 2015. It is an enhancement of Chromecast 1st gen, providing better picture quality.  Like Chromecast generation 1 this device also has a HDMI port and has a small USB port through which Chromecast is connected to the power cable which is further connected to the adapter or the USB port available.

 Chromecast 3rd Generation 
This device is known as Chromecast Ultra. It supports 4K resolution and high dynamic range thus being an improvement over the earlier versions of Chromecast.This device has a LAN port built in the adapter allowing the users to directly connect internet cable to it thus providing better user experience.

Detailed specifications for these devices is provided in given table:

Chromecast (1st generation) Chromecast (2nd generation) Chromecast Audio Chromecast Ultra
Release date 07/24/13 09/29/15 09/29/15 November 6, 2016[27]
Sales discontinued 09/29/15
Launch price US$35 US$35 US$35 US$69[27]
System on a chip Marvell Armada 1500 Mini 88DE3005-A1[13][28] Marvell Armada 1500 Mini Plus 88DE3006[28] Marvell Armada 1500 Mini Plus 88DE3006[19] Marvell Armada 1500 Mini Plus 88DE3009[29]
Memory 512 MB RAM DDR3L[13] 512 MB RAM DDR3L[20] 256 MB RAM DDR3L[20]
Storage 2 GB[13] 256 MB[20] 256 MB[20]
Display 1080p 1080p N/A 4K Ultra HD[30]
High dynamic range (HDR10, Dolby Vision)[31]
Audio DAC N/A N/A AKM AK4430 192kHz 24-Bit DAC[20] [32] N/A
Connectivity HDMI (can use CEC)
Wi-Fi (802.11 b/g/n @ 2.4 GHz)
Ethernet (with optional USB power adapter)
HDMI (can use CEC)
Wi-Fi (802.11 b/g/n/ac @ 2.4/5 GHz)[33]
Ethernet (with optional USB power adapter)
Combined 3.5 mm audio jack and mini-TOSLINK socket [34]
Wi-Fi (802.11 b/g/n/ac @ 2.4/5 GHz)[35]
Ethernet (with optional USB power adapter)
HDMI (can use CEC)
Wi-Fi (802.11 b/g/n/ac @ 2.4/5 GHz)[33]
Ethernet (with included USB power adapter)[30]
Power Micro-USB
(power adapter or USB port)
(power adapter or USB port)
(power adapter or USB port)
(power adapter required)
Dimensions 72 mm × 35 mm × 12 mm (2.83 in × 1.38 in × 0.47 in) 51.9 mm × 51.9 mm × 13.49 mm (2.04 in × 2.04 in × 0.53 in) 51.9 mm × 51.9 mm × 13.49 mm (2.04 in × 2.04 in × 0.53 in) 58.2 mm × 58.2 mm × 13.70 mm (2.29 in × 2.29 in × 0.54 in)[30]
Weight 34 g (1.20 oz) 39.1 g (1.38 oz) 30.7 g (1.08 oz) 47 g (1.66 oz)[30]


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