Google’s dongle-shaped Chromecast was launched back in 2013 and has been one of the popular choices for streaming Google Cast apps and Internet video services like Netflix, YouTube and other content through the HDMI port of TV sets, apart from mirroring certain Android devices. The device however had its limitations as it supported 2.4GHz Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n bands instead of 5GHz Wi-Fi 802.11ac bands, and arefreshed model has been long expected for increased bandwidth.
Now, Google has launched an Ethernet Adapter for Chromecast that gives users to ability to add a wired connection for hard-to-reach Wi-Fi spots. The $15 (approximately Rs. 950) Ethernet Adapter for Chromecast went on sale via Google Store on Wednesday and was soon listed as ‘out of stock.’ The company is yet to reveal when the stocks of the Adapter for Chromecast for Chromecast will be replenished. So far Google has also not revealed whether the Ethernet Adapter for Chromecast will go on sale outside the US.
The Google Store listing notes, “This optional accessory lets you connect your Chromecast directly to your router to create a fast and reliable connection for your Chromecast.” The Ethernet adapter can be connected to the Chromecast via the included USB cable and run an Ethernet cable from the router to the power supply, and plug in.
Lenovo in May launched its own version of a media streaming device named Lenovo Cast, which could also mirror content from mobile devices to TV screens. The palm-sized hockey puck-shaped device was priced at $49 and would be available worldwide starting August. The Lenovo Cast supports dual 2.4GHz and 5GHz 802.11 a/b/g/n Wi-Fi network bands (but not 802.11ac), which gives a range of roughly 20 metres and mirrors content from mobile devices to TV screens in 1080p resolution. The device features a single Micro-USB port, a Micro-HDMI port, and HDCP 2.0. It also supports HDMI 1.3. It has a diameter of 70mm, a height of 15mm, and weighs 50 grams. Apart from being able to stream media, the device also lets users easily mirror their smartphone’s display on the connected television.
With 5GHz Wi-Fi, the Lenovo Cast had some features over and above Google’s Chromecast dongle already in the market. However, Google is expected to launch the next-generation Chromecast or Chromecast 2 this year.