How To Video
Access hidden Chromecast featuresGoogle's $35 TV dongle is capable of doing more than you think. From mirroring your entire screen to playing local files; here's how you can get the most out of your Chromecast.
Im Dan Graziano, and I'm here with Google's $35 Chromecast. This small dongle connects to your HDMI port on the back of your TV, and allows you to wirelessly stream content from your computer or Android or iOS device. The Chromecast currently supports Youtube, Pandora, Hulu Plus, Netflix, and HBO GO, while Android users also have access to movies and TV shows that they purchase from the Google Play store; but there are also other ways to stream content to your TV using the Chromecast. You should already have the Google Cast extension installed on your Chrome browser. If not, go download it from the Chrome web store. This will allow you to cast content from your computer to your TV. What you may not know is that the Chromecast can actually mirror your computer's entire screen. Click on the Google Cast extension, and from the drop-down menu, select Cast entire screen. It's also possible to cast locally stored files from your computer to your TV. Open a browser tab, and press Ctrl O on Windows, or Command O on Mac. Select a file, and then cast the browser tab from the Google Cast extension. If you're encountering choppy playback, or dealing with a lot of buffering issues while casting, try lowering your streaming settings. Click on the Google Cast extension in your browser, select Options, and lower your streaming quality to 480p. Your videos may look a little worse, but you should be able to watch them without interruption. To find out more about the Chromecast, check out CNET's full review. And to learn more tips like these, visit howto.cnet.com. For CNET, I'm Dan Graziano.