Google has unveiled a new music product, Cast for audio: a way for consumers to play their digital tracks on speakers via the cloud that will rival Apple’s Airplay.
Google Cast for audio uses the same technology as the company’s popular $35/£30 Chromecast, a digital media player that plugs into HDTVs and allows people to stream video via WiFi and/or through their Android device.
In 2014, Chromecast established itself in 27 countries, with usage per device has increasing by 60% since launch in 2013 due to the growing roster of new apps and features.
“Google Cast for audio embeds the same technology behind Chromecast into speakers, sound bars, and A/V receivers,” explained Tomer Shekel, Product Manager, Google Cast. “Just like Chromecast, simply tap the cast button in your favorite music or radio app on Android, iOS, or the web, and select a Google Cast Ready speaker to get the party started.”
Google Cast-ready speakers pull content directly from the cloud, which allows users to continue to use their source device – phone, tablet, or laptop – without straining the battery. Google says these speakers will work with a growing list of apps including Deezer, Google Play Music, iHeartRadio, NPR One, Pandora, Rdio, TuneIn, and many more.
The first Google Cast Ready speakers will first be available in the US this spring from lead brands Sony, LG, and HEOS by Denon with more brands coming later in 2015 with the support of chip makers Broadcom, Marvell, MediaTek and system integrator Libre Wireless.
“These products will join a growing Google Cast ecosystem, which includes more Android TVs, game consoles and set-top boxes,” added Shekel.Music Business Worldwide