Chromecast, any HDMI-capable TV can receive video stream

Discussions on how emerging technology can assist the distribution of media content through mobile, kiosks, Internet, social networks, etc.
aclawson
Senior Member
Posts: 712
Joined: Fri Jan 19, 2007 6:28 pm
Location: Commerce Twp, MI

Chromecast, any HDMI-capable TV can receive video stream

Postby aclawson » Wed Jul 24, 2013 1:25 pm

$35 for a device from Google that plugs into any TV's HDMI port and will receive a stream from any device that can run Chrome. You could stream a Webcast onto a tablet or smartphone and then relay the stream to any of the newer meetinghouse TVs.

RossEvans
Senior Member
Posts: 1346
Joined: Wed Jun 11, 2008 8:52 pm
Location: Austin TX
Contact:

Re: Chromecast, any HDMI-capable TV can receive video stream

Postby RossEvans » Wed Jul 24, 2013 6:16 pm

This does look interesting. But from the early reviews I have read, it seems that taking full advantage might require some server-side (at lds.org) and client-side (such as the Mormon Channel Android app) work to stream video seamlessly from a remote server to the Chromecast device. Initially, only Netflix and YouTube work this way. Other content providers, including the church, will need to develop such direct connectivity using the Chromecast SDK.

I expect that the existing Mormon Channel area on YouTube itself should work fine. I think all the Android Mormon Channel app does today is point to the videos hosted on YouTube, so perhaps that functionality would be similar.

There is supposed to be an alternate method of streaming general content from another device running a Chrome browser thrown from that user device to the Chromecast device via WiFi. But reportedly that does not work as well.

russellhltn
Community Administrator
Posts: 20762
Joined: Sat Jan 20, 2007 2:53 pm
Location: U.S.

Re: Chromecast, any HDMI-capable TV can receive video stream

Postby russellhltn » Wed Jul 24, 2013 6:22 pm

If it's streaming over the Internet, there's no promise that the bandwidth is there to support it.

As for the remote control - how do you assure that only the teacher has control of the TV and not someone else?
Have you searched the Wiki?
Try using a Google search by adding "site:tech.lds.org/wiki" to the search criteria.

User avatar
Mikerowaved
Community Moderators
Posts: 3132
Joined: Sun Dec 23, 2007 12:56 am
Location: Layton, UT

Re: Chromecast, any HDMI-capable TV can receive video stream

Postby Mikerowaved » Fri Jul 26, 2013 7:24 am

aclawson wrote:$35 for a device from Google that plugs into any TV's HDMI port and will receive a stream from any device that can run Chrome. You could stream a Webcast onto a tablet or smartphone and then relay the stream to any of the newer meetinghouse TVs.

From what I've read, that's not exactly how it's designed to work. Quoting from this CNXSoft article:
Chromekey only works with online services such as YouTube, Netflix, Google Play Movie & TV and Pandora, and it does not rely on your device to send data, but just gets it directly from the original source, potentially providing smoother playback, and avoiding draining your batteries.


You use a 'Droid, iOS, PC, or Mac device (with Chrome) as a remote control to "point" it to online content that supports Chromecast, but it won't stream content from a local device, without some serious development work, as RossEvans pointed out.
So we can better help you, please edit your Profile to include your general location.

RossEvans
Senior Member
Posts: 1346
Joined: Wed Jun 11, 2008 8:52 pm
Location: Austin TX
Contact:

Re: Chromecast, any HDMI-capable TV can receive video stream

Postby RossEvans » Fri Jul 26, 2013 2:39 pm

I think russellhltn is right that bandwidth contraints probably make the Chromecast device unsuitable for many meetinghouse applications. (High-end Rokus and Android HDMI sticks seem superior for that purpose because they can also display locally downloaded content.) But given the buzz about this new product, it may achieve significant market uptake among consumers. That includes LDS members who basically want to get General Conference or Mormon Channel content on their home TV screens.

The church seems to be interested in developing applications that support such dissemination on popular platforms. So the Chromecast might be a target for church developers for those reasons.

qualheim
New Member
Posts: 8
Joined: Wed Oct 22, 2008 5:40 pm
Location: USA

Re: Chromecast, any HDMI-capable TV can receive video stream

Postby qualheim » Sun Jul 28, 2013 9:13 am

Of course, using Chromecast at a meetinghouse, in that it outputs to HDMI, would require your meetinghouse to actually have something besides a tube TV available...

(Sigh.)

aclawson
Senior Member
Posts: 712
Joined: Fri Jan 19, 2007 6:28 pm
Location: Commerce Twp, MI

Re: Chromecast, any HDMI-capable TV can receive video stream

Postby aclawson » Sun Jul 28, 2013 11:26 am

You can stream any tab within the Chrome browser to the Chromecast -

device.https://support.google.com/chromecast/answer/2998338?hl=en&ref_topic=3210038

To cast from Chrome, you must have the Google Cast Extension installed on your Chrome Browser. Learn how to install the Cast Extension here.


Some sites, such as YouTube and Netflix, are optimized for Cast, and deliver the best possible experience. We are working with more sites to enable them to optimize for Cast. For other sites, it is possible to cast a tab to get that content on your Chromecast.

On sites that are optimized for Cast, there are numerous benefits to using controls provided by the site instead of just casting the tab for that site. These include:

Higher quality: Cast-optimized sites can serve high quality content that is best for viewing on TV. This will often means you'll get a full 1080p high definition picture; for some content you may also get 5.1 surround sound (if supported by your TV or receiver). When Casting a tab, you are limited to a maximum of 720p (if supported by your computer).

Battery life and computer load: Cast-optimizes sites play directly on Chromecast, and put no load on your computer. Casting a tab requires a lot of your computers power, which is why it's not supported on all computers.
,
Plays independently: When you play from Cast-optimized sites, you can shut down your computer or close the lid. With tab projection, you need to keep your computer on throughout the cast.
Cast optimized sites will generally try to automatically switch from casting a tab to an optimized mode of operation if you are already casting a tab when you visit the site.

Casting a tab is still very useful for sites that aren't optimized, but whenever you see the Cast icon in the video player of a site, that should be your first choice

Once you're set up to Use Chromecast with Chrome, casting a tab is just a click away! To start casting a tab of your Chrome Browser:

Make sure you are on the tab you want to project to your TV.
Press the Cast button in the Chrome toolbar (top right hand area) of your browser.
A list of available Chromecast devices will appear on your TV. Pick any device to cast the current tab to this device.
After a very brief load time, the current tab should appear on your TV!
You will see the Cast icon change color to indicate that it is active, and you'll see a glow around the icon for the tab that is being shown.

If your Chromecast is currently in use - for example, it might already be playing a YouTube video - when you open the menu or select the device, you will see a short description of what Chromecast is doing, possibly with some controls (pause, mute, etc) for that activity. Click the 'Cast this Tab' button if you wish to terminate the current activity, and cast the current tab instead. This helps to ensure that you don't accidentally pick the wrong device and interrupt another household member!

The significant majority of web content can be cast. However, sites that use plug-ins such as as Silverlight or Quicktime are not supported, and may result in a lack of picture or sound.

During tab casting, video and images for the tab being cast will be shown on your computer and on your TV. However, sound from the selected tab will only play on your TV. Sounds for other tabs and applications will continue to play on your computer. You may switch to other tabs and/or applications while casting; you can even do this in full-screen mode using the Alt-Tab (Mac: Command-Tab) keyboard shortcut.

While casting, you can click the Cast icon again to take any of the following actions:

Click on the status area that shows what is being cast to return to the tab that you started casting from.
Mute what's playing on your TV using the mute button. This is distinct from your TV's mute function, so you need to unmute from Chrome.
Click on the "Stop" button to stop casting.
You may also stop casting by closing the tab.

RossEvans
Senior Member
Posts: 1346
Joined: Wed Jun 11, 2008 8:52 pm
Location: Austin TX
Contact:

Re: Chromecast, any HDMI-capable TV can receive video stream

Postby RossEvans » Sun Jul 28, 2013 4:05 pm

aclawson wrote:You can stream any tab within the Chrome browser to the Chromecast -

device.https://support.google.com/chromecast/answer/2998338?hl=en&ref_topic=3210038

To cast from Chrome, you must have the Google Cast Extension installed on your Chrome Browser. Learn how to install the Cast Extension here.


Yes, I understand all that. But several of the early reviews I read said that this generalized method of repeat-casting any Chrome browser content via WiFi (still officially a beta feature) doesn't work very well. Reportedly there is pixelization and stuttering. The services that can stream directly from content servers (Netflix, YouTube, others TBD) don't have that problem. These services reportedly stream smoothly.

I have no personal experience yet, but expect to test a unit soon.

RossEvans
Senior Member
Posts: 1346
Joined: Wed Jun 11, 2008 8:52 pm
Location: Austin TX
Contact:

Re: Chromecast, any HDMI-capable TV can receive video stream

Postby RossEvans » Mon Jul 29, 2013 11:35 am

According to this new review in Engadget, there is another factor besides bandwidth that seriously affects the quality of general video mirrored from a source device's Chrome browser to display on the Chromecast device: That is the processor specs of the originating computer. In this test, a newer faster laptop echoed its Chrome tab display decently to the Chromecast at 720p. But older, slower computers didn't work well.

EDIT: See also Google's published hardware requirements for computers hosting Chrome for mirrored streaming.

That implies that in addition to the $35 Chromecast device and a good WiFi connection, the user also would need a fairly good laptop to stream general browser content. This would be another downside to trying to use Chromecast for meetinghouse viewing. Note that these disadvantages do not obtain for content using the direct programmed link to the server application.

RossEvans
Senior Member
Posts: 1346
Joined: Wed Jun 11, 2008 8:52 pm
Location: Austin TX
Contact:

Re: Chromecast, any HDMI-capable TV can receive video stream

Postby RossEvans » Mon Jul 29, 2013 6:48 pm

I've now had a chance to play with a new Chromecast, and my experience is consistent with the reviews I have read:

Streaming video directly from YouTube, including Mormon Channel content, works very smoothly on my home WiFi. Both my Windows laptop running Chrome and my Galaxy S3 Android's YouTube app handily control the near-perfect YouTube streaming direct from the YouTube server to my Chromecast. (Testing Tabernacle Choir performances are usually a good benchmark.) I also can use the Mormon Channel app on the Android to select videos, then choose the YouTube app for the display, then choose the Chromecast as its target -- a lot of steps, but the sequence does cause the selected video to stream cleanly on the HDTV.

But streaming general content just using the "Cast" functionality within the Windows Chrome browser is very laggy -- video lags audio by 10 seconds or more. Even browsing to non-video websites exhibits lag. The mirrored video on the Chromecast runs between 5 and 20 seconds behind that on my laptop screen when its display changes, apparently depending on complexity. I gather that the specs of my 2-1/2 year old Dell Latitude laptop are at least partially to blame. It has a first-generation I5 CPU, but Google's minimum requirements for high quality video casting from the browser call for a second-generation I5 or better. That is the Intel generation that first incorporated an integrated GPU. My older computer without the onboard graphics processor just can't handle all that video transcoding fast enough. Perhaps, as Google suggests, the latest and greatest PC hardware wouldn't have this problem.


Return to “Digital Media”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest