by Gray Graham
If you pay attention to new consumer technology you might have heard something about the new Google Chromecast that was released last week. This little device stole the show from the highly anticipated new Nexus 7.
The reason for that is simple. People love watching TV. I say TV because to the average person it is all just TV. Doesn't matter if it is over the air, cable, satellite, DVD, Netflix, or Youtube, if it is on the big screen in the living room it is TV.
Now of course this will drive nerds and geeks crazy. If you don't use the proper terms and the proper technology then you are not understanding how serious all of this is. I joke because for the past week I have read tech journalists and bloggers say everything from the Chromecast is great to it is too complicated for the average user.
For those that don't know what the Chromecast is let me give you a brief rundown. Some of you may remember Google TV that gave you the promise of watching anything on the internet on your TV just like your computer. What Google forgot was that media companies, actors, and writers are greedy so while Google is perfectly happy giving away stuff, Media companies are not so they blocked their websites from working with Google TV. This immediately made the devices useless to the average person for anything of value.
So last week Google released the Chromecast, which is a small device that is designed to work with your phone, tablet, or computer running Chrome and stream what is on that device to your TV. This gives you the ability to easily watch Youtube on your TV and use your phone as the ultimate remote control. The best part is that the Chromecast is only $35 with 3-months of Netflix free (while supplies last of course).
So the question then becomes do you need a Chromecast? At $35 it is the cheapest option that enables you to watch things from the internet on your computer; that is if you don't already own a Wii, Playstation 3, Xbox 360, media center computer, or already own a set top box like a Roku.
To be honest I don't know anyone that wants to watch the internet on their TV that doesn't already own a device that does that. I know few people that have a problem watching this content on their existing computer. I know fewer people still that would prefer to watch internet stuff over what is on cable tv right now.
See I think that for nerds, geeks, and early adopters with money to burn the Chromecast is a nice toy, but is not something the average person needs. Despite what you have heard (and I am still amazed that there are technology professionals that say it is hard to set up) the Chromecast is as easy to set up as attaching a DVD player to your TV.
At $35 the Chromecast is the cheapest of the set top box like devices and while its program choices are now limited to Netflix, Youtube, Google Play, in theory anything that appears in your Chrome browser, with HBO and Hulu to soon follow. That number will grow as Google continues to make deals and companies began to work on their Chromecast strategy, it is still enough to keep most people covered so if you have a large family and have an extra TV or two you can have it internet connected for under 40 bucks and you can't really complain too much about that.