For the price, Google’s Chromecast is one of the best streamers out there, and consumers seem to agree. According to Google VP of product management, Mario Queiroz, the cast button has been pressed over 650 million times since the device’s release, a pretty significant rise over the 400 million figure Google reported three months ago. To capitalize on that growth, Google says it plans on releasing Chromecast version two, though it isn’t clear when the device will be available—or for how much.
Queiroz didn’t say much about the next Chromecast iteration, though he did hint Google is working to make the device “one endpoint,” while other “Chromecast devices” will act as other endpoints. So a kind of central hub for multiple devices. Maybe for your smart home gadgets?
“I can say we really want to bring the richness of this first screen-second screen experience to life” Queiroz said. “The hardware capabilities will give us a better opportunity to take full advantage of a large screen paired with a small screen.”
In addition to Chromecast’s growing popularity among consumers, Queiroz revealed the device is becoming increasingly popular among developers, too. As of now, more than 6,000 developers are said to be building upwards of 10,000 apps for the Chromecast ecosystem, showing how flexible and powerful such an affordable and small device can be. One thing Google hopes to work on in the future is giving developers access to Chromecast’s “Backdrop” API, allowing apps to display information on a TV screen when Chromecast is idle.
For most people, Google’s Chromecast is plenty powerful as an alternative to the many set-top boxes on the market. But even Google sees space to go up against devices like the Fire TV and Apple TV. Early next month, the search giant will ship its Nexus Player, which will finally bring Google’s Android TV to a living room near you.