How to use Chromecast: Everything you need to know

Google Chromecast isn't just for video. Here's how to use Chromecast to stream almost anything

Google Chromecast is a blissfully simple way to send video and audio seamlessly from your smartphone, tablet, computer or smart device to your TV, no matter where it is in the house. To make things even better, Chromecast is wonderfully cheap and easy to pick up and use.

As long as your selection of apps includes Chromecast support, you're using Chrome browser on PC or your smart device supports Google Cast, you can send virtually anything to your TV via Chromecast. You can even mirror the screen of your device to your TV if you'd rather have a big-screen experience.

Use the navigation menu shown here to go straight to the section you need, or read on for a step-by-step guide on how to set everything up.

What's more, guests can use your Chromecast thanks to the Guest Mode. Anyone within 25ft of the Chromecast, and who has the Google Cast/Home app, can beam content from their phone or device to the streamer. Alternatively, you can set them up as a user by giving them the four-digit PIN found in the app's settings on their device.

How to use Chromecast

To get started, you’re going to need a Chromecast, Chromecast 2 or Chromecast Ultra and a spare HDMI input on your TV. You'll also need to connect it to a power supply, but if your TV has a USB port you can also use that to power it, unless you want it to always be on.

Once you’ve got yours, set it up and connected it to your TV, all you need is to do install the Google Home app from the Google Play store or Apple App Store and follow the instructions on-screen. It really is that simple. 

  1. Buy a Chromecast 2 – you might as well, they’re only £30 each.

  2. Connect it to your TV and set it up using Google's Home app.

  3. Download any Google Cast/Home-enabled app and look for the Cast symbol, then tap it to stream to the connected Chromecast. Below, we show you where you’ll find the location of this icon across three of the most common apps:

Use Chromecast to stream BBC iPlayer

On BBC iPlayer you’ll locate the icon in the top right corner of the app. If you don’t see it, close the app down, kill it off using the multitasking view and restart it. You should now be able to see the icon. Tap it, then select your Chromecast to cast iPlayer content to your TV.

Use Chromecast to stream Netflix

On Netflix, the icon is in the same place as on BBC iPlayer - in the top right of the screen. To cast, press the icon, select your Chromecast from the next box and - after a short delay - the video will play on your TV.

Use Chromecast to stream Spotify

The Chromecast finally has official Spotify support, but where is that pesky Cast icon? It's in a different place to the BBC iPlayer and Netflix apps, at the very bottom of the Now Playing screen, where you’ll see a link to Devices Available. Tap that, select your Chromecast on the next screen and you'll have Spotify on your TV. Magic.

Google Slides

Beyond watching shows and listening to music on popular sites, you can showcase your own work via Chromecast via Google Slides through Google Cast. Through your Chromecast you can 'beam' whatever is on your connected device to the TV. If you connect your laptop to your Chromecast and then hit Present on Google Slides, your presentation will appear on the big screen. You can continue to use your laptop to control the presentation, or get a clicker to do it remotely.

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