Google has announced that the Google Cast Software SDK (Software Development Kit) is available for all developers who want to add Chromecast support in their apps and (web) services. The first apps available on Chromecast came from large companies that had the engineering resources to work on a pre-release API, and that were big enough for Google to justify spending the support effort. Among them were Netflix, Hulu,Pandora, and of course Google’s own YouTube and Google Play – just to name a few.
With a publicly available SDK, scores of other developers will be able to join the party, and users are likely to see a quick jump in the number of available services. How far will this go? That remains to be seen, but this doesn’t look like too much work, and the principle of Chromecast is to leverage existing content, so chances are that we see some really cool apps show up, and hopefully some surprising ones.
If you are not familiar with Chromecast, it is a product that was launched in July 2013. The product itself is a little HDMI key/dongle that is powered via USB, and the dongle can stream and decode content directly from the web. It is controlled over the network by a smart device (phone, tablet, laptop). The concept is pretty awesome because it removes the user interface burden from the dongle and puts it into apps that want to “cast” content to the dongle.
By doing that, Google has created a compelling, always integrated way to send content to the TV. And because Chromecast (official product page) can pull content directly from the web, the “controller” device can be turned off, or leave the room at any time, without interfering with the content on the TV. Another device can take over. Watch the Google Cast SDK overview: