A selection of tools and tips to get the best out of your device.
Since its launch in March, Google’s Chromecast device has been widely received by media fans across the country. Costing just £30, the USB-drive shaped device connects your TV into a multi-faceted broadcasting device, giving you access to hours of entertainment streamed in great quality. But since its launch, Chromecast has continued to develop and evolve into a fully-fledged entertainment centre, offering a wide range of services through dedicated apps. Here is our selection of the must-have apps to let you get the most out of your Chromecast
First off, you’re going to need to know where to find your new apps, a task made difficult by the fact that Google makes it tricky to find a full list of the hundred or so apps currently available. CastStore solves this issue by splitting up apps into various categories, such as Media & Video and Music & Audio to make them easier to find. Apps can be further filtered to just show free or paid-for versions, as if you’re a keen gamer, there is also a section dedicated to those games compatible with Chromecast.
Of course, with all that media content being broadcast around, you may need something to keep on track of just what is being stored. Plex is a smooth and sleek media management app which enables you to control media from all of your Android devices and stream to your TV.
Plex is also compatible with popular hosting sites such as Vimeo and YouTube, meaning you can queue videos to watch later on with any device, and supports a huge range of media formats.
The BBC’s channel hub is one of the most popular television apps for use with Chromecast, and with the sheer amount of programming available, it’s not hard to see why. Users can cast content from the BBC’s range of television and radio channels directly to their TV, which can then be fast-forwarded, skipped and tweaked to your liking just like the iPlayer app on your laptop or tablet device.
BT has sought to enforce itself as a major player on the UK sport broadcasting scene since the launch of BT Sport last year. Although Sky still dominates in terms of sheer content, BT Sport have signed several key deals which mean that the channel is the only place to see certain events, including Premiership football, live on television. Luckily, then, its Chromecast app providers subscribers with an easy way to send content to their screens from the mobile device, and once playing users can continue to use the app as they wish.
As well as broadcasting video and audio content, you can also use Chromecast to send images from your laptop, tablet, or mobile device to your television. DayFrame offers a quick and simple method to do this, collecting images from your Facebook, Instagram, Google+, Flickr, 500px, Tumblr and even Dropbox accounts. Photos can then be organised and displayed in a variety of ways, such as certain albums or profile, meaning you can always have your holiday snaps to hand if friends drop by.