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Google Chromecast Ultra: What you need to know

Information about the next generation of Chromecast is here.

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El nuevo transmisor digital de Google, el Chromecast Ultra, sale a la venta en noviembre de 2016.
Google

At Google's huge October 4 event, it unveiled the new version of Chromecast. Called Google Chromecast Ultra, this digital media player has 4K video support and a similar design to the second-generation version.

Overall Chromecast watch time has increased 160 percent since last year, when Google unveiled the 2nd-gen Chromecast and Chromecast Audio, and the company has sold more than 30 million Chromecast devices. Google hopes to achieve even more with its newest addition.

What is Chromecast?

Chromecast is a media streaming device. It simply plugs into the HDMI port on your television. Once plugged in, you can use your mobile device to cast your favorite music, movies, TV shows, sports, games and more to your television. You can also use your phone to play and pause content. This device works with Android phone and tablets, iPhone, iPad and Windows laptops and Chromebooks.

The new design

Not much has changed when it comes to Chromecast's esthetics. It still has the same "hockey puck" look, but the logo on the side has changed. The round Google logo has been switched out for a simple "G."

Another thing that hasn't changed is the thick --but short-- USB cord. You really don't need anything longer, though, since it simply snuggles behind your television or audio system. When the cable isn't in use, it attaches to the back of the unit using a magnet.

Unlike the second-gen, this version will only come in black instead of three different colors, though Google may unveil more colors later on.

What has changed

The big change is the 4K support. This means the Chromecast Ultra will be able to cast content in 4K ultra HD resolution. It will also have HDR and Dolby Vision support. The Ultra is 1.8 times faster at loading content than the previous version.

There have also been Wi-Fi improvements to support streams from Full HD to Ultra HD. It also comes with an Ethernet port that is integrated with the power adapter so that it is easy to connect.

According to Google reps at the event, Ultra will provide the highest contrast ratio and deepest colors from your favorite shows on Netflix, for example, access to popular titles on Vudu, and access to YouTube's catalog of 4K videos.

It was also announced that Google Play Movies will be rolling out 4K content in November, so Ultra will have even more to offer.

The cost

Chromecast Ultra will cost $69, almost double what the standard non-4K model costs at $35. It will be available in November.