The Chromecast Audio is no more. Google decided to stop production of the audio device that enabled one to add any speaker to Google Cast setup. If you still want one, you’ll have to hurry.
Google now selling its Chromecast Audio adapter for $15, down from $35; to tempt one to buy a discontinued product. Available on the Google Store as well as at participating retailers, which includes Best Buy, Macy’s and B&H Photo-Video-Audio. The sale continues until February 28, 2019, while supplies last.
WHAT IS CHROMECAST?
Chromecast devices run a simplified version of Google’s Chrome OS and have short memory and hardware specs. They don’t require a ton of power, though, because they aren’t much more than elevated gateways to streaming content.
To use a Chromecast,
- Firstly, you simply plug it into your TV’s HDMI port,
- Secondly, plug it into a power source, and
- connect to your home’s internet network by following the instructions given in the Google Home app.
Finally, the device acts as a portal for your streaming apps on your mobile/computer device to be “cast” onto TV.
ABOUT CHROMECAST AUDIO
Chromecast Audio was launched a little over 3 years ago. It was a way to bring multi-room audio streaming to existing stereo systems and speakers with line-in. The dongle, looks almost identical to the company’s Chromecast video streaming adapter. It allows users to cast music, podcasts and other audio from various apps.
However, google hasn’t updated the hardware of the Chromecast Audio device since its launch in September of 2015. Although, the streaming dongle has become a lot more useful in recent years. For one thing, it can be grouped with a growing number of audio devices. It includes Google’s own Home smart speakers, with built-in Chromecast tech to play the same music concurrently across the home.
Likewise, Chromecast Audio used in concert with the Google Assistant, which makes it possible to:
- use a Google Home Mini for voice control, and
- play any song on request in the existing stereo system.
Also, with the latest update to its Chromecast video streaming adapter, the company even makes it possible to,
- synchronize audio playback on TVs and
- speakers with Chromecast Audio dongles.
GOOGLE CANS CHROMECAST AUDIO
Google mentioned in a statement that:
“Our product portfolio continues to evolve, and now we have a variety of products for users to enjoy audio,”.
“We have therefore stopped manufacturing our Chromecast Audio products. We will continue to offer assistance for Chromecast Audio devices, so users can continue to enjoy their music, podcasts etc.”
While Chromecast turned out to be a boon for Google, the Chromecast Audio was always more of a niche product.
Google’s more interested in getting people to buy its Google Home products and Assistant- or Cast-enabled speakers from its partners. It’s also worth considering that all Google Home devices can connect to Bluetooth-enabled speakers. Although plenty of people have a nice speaker setup at home that doesn’t include built-in Bluetooth support.
“Bluetooth adapters suck,” Google mentioned at the time. Although at this point, it seems a Bluetooth adapter may just be the way to go.
The Chromecast Audio first introduced back in 2015, in conjunction with the second-generation Chromecast. Over the years, the Chromecast Audio received several updates that authorized features like multi-room support.
Google says it’ll continue to support Chromecast Audio users for the time being. So, if one has already invested in this ecosystem, they should be set for a few more years.