Google Chromecast SDK lets developers super-size their apps for TV

The kit for Android, Chrome OS and iOS is designed for sending mobile apps to the big screen

App developers can now push their software onto a TV screen using a software development kit that Google is introducing for its Chromecast media streaming device.

The SDK, which is being released starting Monday, lets developers port their apps to the Chromecast, a US$35 HDMI dongle that the company released last year for TV and music streaming. A small set of services including YouTube, Netflix and Pandora already work with the device, but the software toolkit might usher in a range of new applications to let people, say, beam a Google Hangout session or their Facebook news feed to a TV.

The toolkit could also boost Google's ability to compete with the Apple TV, which Apple has yet to open up to outside developers.

The SDK will be available on Android and iOS as well as on Google's Chrome operating system through the Google Cast browser extension, the company said.

Developers don't need to create a new app for it to work: The SDK can be incorporated into existing mobile and Web apps to port them to the TV, Google said. In addition, the SDK has a default media player that can be used to play back simple HTML5 content, and more customized options are available using CSS.

Google has already made some sample apps available on GitHub, to show developers how to, for example, send messages from a Chrome desktop browser to a TV receiver, or how to cast videos to the TV from an iOS app.

It's still early to say whether the toolkit will catch on. And some existing apps, such as those for people on the go, may not make sense to stream to a TV. But if developers come up with useful applications, that could help Google incorporate more of its services into people's homes.

Google also demonstrated its interest in people's home data last month when it acquired thermostat maker Nest for $3.2 billion.

Google said the Google Cast extension for Chrome would begin rolling out Monday, along with the SDK for iOS. The Google Cast SDK for Android will be available in a few days as part of the Google Play Services 4.2 update, the company said.

Zach Miners covers social networking, search and general technology news for IDG News Service. Follow Zach on Twitter at @zachminers. Zach's e-mail address is zach_miners@idg.com

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags internetGoogleApplevideoconsumer electronicsInternet-based applications and servicesMedia players / recordersMusic and audioTVs

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Zach Miners

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Essentials

Mobile

Exec

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?