Chromecast takes a bite out of Apple TV

Google gives Apple the one-two punch with its small and powerful HDMI stick

During Google’s Breakfast with Sundar Pichai event, the Chromecast issued a challenge to Apple’s well-established Apple TV. Here is how Google’s media streamer stacks up against the competition.

CONTENT

With over 60,000 movies and 230,000 TV episodes available on iTunes, the Cupertino-based company has a strong lead against Google when it comes to content.

Google’s Chromecast supports media streaming service Netflix and its own YouTube service. Compared to Apple’s wide range of support for apps that include Hulu Plus, Vimeo and live sports from MLB, NBA and NHL, it’s going to be an uphill battle for Google.

Winner: Apple

PLATFORM SUPPORT

Google’s agnostic platform support gives it a tremendous advantage over Apple’s restrictive ecosystem. Chromecast supports nearly every single operating system out there, including its own Android and Microsoft’s Windows platform. It even supports Apple’s iOS and Mac OS X. Clearly, Google is trying to be best friends with everyone, including its rivals.

In contrast, Apple sent a clear and restrictive signal by limiting Apple TV to its own ecosystem. 

Winner: Google

More after the break...

PRICING

Apple fans do not bat an eyelid when they fork out RM349 for the Apple TV, all in the name of enjoying their movies and music through the big screen.

Google, on the other hand, has been very generous with product pricing. It’s more likely for someone to spend a mere US$35 (RM112) for the Chromecast, and take a longer time to decide if he should fork out RM349 for the Apple TV.

Winner: Google

AVAILABILITY

As usual, the Chromecast (and Nexus 7) will only be available in the US. For now, that is. Google hasn’t made any official announcements of its availablity outside of the States. Apple, however, has been aggressively pushing its media streamer to countries, including Singapore and Malaysia.

Winner: Apple

VERDICT

For now, Apple and Google are standing on even ground. Apple users are treated to a truckload of content, but its closed ecosystem has made it impossible for non-Apple users to tap into the iTunes world.

Google’s content offering for Chromecast is playing catch-up, but its fair treatment to all platforms and affordable pricing put the tiny media streamer in a favourable light.

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