It’s official: We’re all watching TV on the Internet.
The newest player in the game is Google, which has just launched the--drumroll, please--Chromecast ($35).
The night-light-sized device plugs into your TV’s HDMI port and then uses your local WiFi to stream just about anything.
“But my Roku/Apple TV already does this,” you say.
Well, yes...and no. Unlike the other players, Chromecast turns your Android or Apple phone, computer or tablet into the remote, meaning you don’t have to fiddle with a persnickety controller just to look up shows. (Fear not: You can still text away on your phone when it’s serving as a remote.)
Plus, unlike its predecessors, Chromecast also streams web tabs from your computer to your TV, so you can watch, say, the latest PureWow video on the big(ger) screen.
The downside is that, for the time being, only Netflix, YouTube and Google Play have signed on as partners--but talks with other major streaming services are in the works.
The real selling point: You don’t have to learn anything new to get going; the step-by-step instructions are idiot-proof, we swear.