Skip to main content

Google throws open Chromecast to developers with software design kit

Google released the Chromecast last summer to mostly positive reviews. This $35 (£21) HDMI dongle is ideal for streaming video and audio to a TV or sound system, but support has been severely limited.

There are only about a dozen Chromecast-compatible apps, all developed with early access to the API granted by Google. Now that number is about to explode as Google has opened up the Cast API to all developers.

Chromecast launched with only a handful of compatible apps, including Netflix, Google Play Movies, and YouTube. Over the next few months, apps like Hulu, HBO Go, Pandora, and Plex were added.

Other developers have been able to work with the beta APIs to get apps ready to go, but they were prevented from releasing anything until the SDK was final.

Now that everything is official, all those apps are going to begin flowing in Google Play and the App Store. Keep an eye on your favourite apps for the Chromecast button, which will enable you to blast content of all sorts onto a bigger screen.

Official support for the Cast SDK is being pushed to all Android devices with the new version of Google Play Services. That should happen in the background, though.

All the uses for Google's streaming dongle have been pretty straightforward so far. Official support frees developers to innovate and turn the Chromecast into something truly amazing.

We don't really know how far developers can push the Chromecast, but we're finally about to find out.