Since I first wrote a bit about Chromecast, most of the fun stuff you could do with it was immediately patched and made unusable. No longer are you easily able to stream videos from your computer, and things that were looking up sort of went south rather quickly.
My two Chromecast units arrived for work and home, and unfortunately they arrived unrootable and patched to the latest update, which meant no fun rooting and messing around for me.
The main problem is you’re limited to YouTube, Netflix, and casting pages from the Chrome web browser. These make the Chromecast fun if you’re someone who doesn’t have an XBox, Roku, computer, Playstation, etc handy, but probably not so much if you have any electronic device from the past 10 years plugged into your TV.
Fortunately Chromecast is in early beta still. Unfortunately they seem to be quick at keeping the thing from being rooted and turned into an open rootable platform that allows developers a chance to make the thing what it’s capable of doing before Google gets around to that.
With the solid wall of Google up, there’s not too much word leaking out about when the next update will be around, when we can cast local content, when we can use some of the embedded features of the device which allows it to be a universal remote control from Android, or when we can push thousands of baby pictures from our tablet onto the thing.
There’s also issues controlling the thing when a computer is connected to a VPN… it makes me a sad panda.
But soon… soon we’ll have something interesting again. It’s really sad because the device was quite amazing and they took what made it amazing and removed it and any developer attempts to make it more amazing while they work on other things.
Ah well.. at least for the moment it’s back in stock, and it is kind of fun being able to queue up a billion YouTube videos to watch at a party.
The Chromecast is available from Amazon for $35. While it’s not something I’d rush out and get, the potential for that thing to become amazing is there, and Google has a way of surprising us.