Mario Queiroz

A ... certain segment of fans ... have gotten it into their heads that Google played down the fact that Chromecast needs USB power to work. They are wrong.

Here's Google's Mario Queiroz, describing Chromecast at Wednesday's event:

"Once you take it out of its beautiful, clean box, all you have to do is plug it in to, ah, any HDMI input on your TV, power through USB, connect to your home Wifi, and you're ready to kick back and watch."

See also:

Just stop it.

There are 112 comments

mcgowan398 says:

I can't wait to get one of these into my TV!

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TheDu9du says:


EXTRA EXTRA! Here's the solution to the problem:

Buy a 1 foot cable, plug it from the USB outlet that's on your flat TV and keep it connected to the Chromecast. Once plugged you can tape it to the TV or not.

There's actually a USB to MicroUSB cable included in the ChromeCast's box

oldarney says:

The article is also worng , you do not need USB power IF your television comes with HDMI 1.4. All 4K TV's come with it, and most modern TV's also do. It's what allows volume and power control from your phone.

Hint, you can get a Seiki 4K monitor for under $700... Very happy with it.

anthonok says:

Thank you. I'm so tired of seeing articles saying they're hiding the fact.

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anthonok says:

Also heaven forbid a device need a power supply... F*CK

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Cheetah23 says:

I think what a lot of people are seeing is that they show the dongle just plugged into the HDMI port with no ugly USB (or power) cable hanging off the back and plugged in elsewhere.

JoeLemaire says:

This. All of their commercials showed the device without the USB connection. Google definitely told people that they need a USB connection for power, but didn't really show them. Apparently people are better at watching then listening.

hmmm says:

Yeah, this is where the deception comes in I think. All the media pictures and stuff show it without and the design even looks like it isn't supposed to have anything else hanging from it.


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Mayoo614 says:

How many times do you see a Mac in a commercial without any power cord in the middle of a studio on a glass desk. It is not new. Companies do it for years. But in the meantime, everyone have a Wii, PS3 or an XBox along with the mother of all clusterf*ck of cables just to get your 5.1 sound, but they complain about a 35$ HDMI USB key-like device that will probably remain hidden behind the TV. So what there is a USB cable to power it?

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LaMarcus says:


eramos31 says:


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FortTech101 says:

+OVER 9,000

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Soapinmouth says:

You don't have to plug it in with usb if you have a hdmi 1.4 tv you just plug it in exactly how Google showed.

dtuivs says:

exactly because HDMI does in fact provide a 5volt charge

icebike says:

That has been an issue with most small devices connecting to HDMI.

Even the MHL-to-HDMI capable phones and tablets needed USB power.
People should know this by now, but they don't, and there was no reason Google had to shoot those ads showing no USB power connection. They brought the grousing on themselves.

The good thing is that most modern TVs with HDMI ports have USB ports as well, so you might not even need another plug in.

There is an article about the limitations

tdizzel says:

Google's ad for the Moto X event shows a Moto X, but it doesn't show it plugged in. I guess we should just assume it doesn't need to ever be plugged in and will be powered by magic...smh

wxrusss8 says:

Ummm, that's because it has battery power. The Chromecast does not. It has to be plugged in to work. The Moto X doesn't.

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John-Smith says:

Fuck you with your sensible logic!

cozzy123 says:

lol *brain explodes*

tdizzel says:

And when the battery dies you won't have to plug it in because its recharged by magic

This has to be one of the dumbest comments I've seen.

vansmack says:

Turn on your sarcasm detector or look up what smh means....

0chainz says:

How do you know that the X has to be plugged in?

iurnait says:

Wireless charging.

snookasnoo says:

Exactly. But you set the fanboys into a frenzy when you bring up that obvious fact.Look at the two pictures on the bottom in the Play store page and tell me they aren't glossing over it. They are out and out hiding it.

"Get started in 3 easy steps.
Plug Chromecast into your HDTV, connect it to WiFi, then cast videos and more from your smartphone, tablet or laptop to your TV."

There are also two pictures showing it plugged into a TV but no power adaptor. Get real people.

Soapinmouth says:

You can plug it into an hdmi1.4 tv and it doesn't need power.

dtuivs says:

because HDMI provides 5v power supply and if you read the technical specs instead of looking at the pretty pictures you would see that they do in fact state USB power.

zarxic says:

This is exactly what I was thinking. No, they never "hid" it while talking about it, but all the graphics and animations of it flying around and into a TV, they never show the USB power needing to be plugged in. Do I know better? Sure, but I can see how some are a little irked.

p3ngwin1 says:

that's because the Dongle doesn't *need* USB power.

it just needs to be "powered".

HDMI V1.4 already *has* power.

the USB power port on the back is for older TV's with older versions of HDMI that don't already have power.

you can power the dongle with:

A)modern power-providing HDMI V1.4
B)USB from either the TV or a nearby media-center PC or USB hub you may have...
C)the included power adapter.

There is no deception, it's simply a choice to show the dongle working in it's most likely scenario with modern HDMI 1.4 TV's.

Thanks, that was informative. I was wondering why a USB power in conjunction with HDMI. I'm getting a clearer picture in the crystal ball now. I have no idea if my HP plasma TV has HDMI v1.4? I suppose there is one sure way to find out. I will have to cruise some more and figure out what good it is. So, the boobtube is jacked into WiFi, Now I need some Android apps for the SGH-i727, and for the desktop to pump video to the TV via the WiFi to the apportioned HDMI input to be selected with the remote. What displays the video file? The Dongle or Winderz media player?

LaMarcus says:

I don't think I have seen to many commercial for anything that showed that you needed to plug it in to a power source!

still1 says:

Are you freaking kidding me?? Google mentioned this on demo that you need to power it via USB. Its also common sense that an HDMI cant power a device.

hmmm says:

That is not common sense at all and in fact is incorrect.

brendilon says:

Incorrect how? Oh, right, because a small segment of the population has 1.4...

Honestly, this is just people looking for something to bitch about. This device is so good, it may as well be made of magical unicorn horns and be given away for free. It's that good. And folks are bitching because the damn thing needs to be plugged in. Wahhhh!

yentrog31 says:

I was of the understanding that HDMI 1.4 can power the device.

Soapinmouth says:

Yes it can power this device as well if you have it you don't need usb.

dmatherl says:

I would say the only place they downplayed it was in their commercial advertisement. It shows people just simply plugging it in without the USB power cord as if that is all you have to do.

However, personally this doesn't bother me at all.

Kylecore says:

commercials always gloss over everything,
Ever see a commercial for McDonalds and got exactly what you saw in the commercial?Since when does anyone believe exactly whats advertised any more?

dmatherl says:

Haha very true, again it is isn't something that really bothers me. I wouldn't expect them to show someone do the complete setup in the commercial. Just stating it is a little misleading.

I got mine yesterday and the fact that you have to plug it in doesn't really change anything at all about the product.

mykpfsu says:

"Glossing over"-2. To make attractive or acceptable by deception or superficial treatment.

One brief mention compared to many a picture without showing any such power supply I'm pretty sure fits the definition of glossing over.

Razgriz24 says:

Have you really been far even as decided to use even go want to do look more like?

Those last three words in the article are for you.

mykpfsu says:

Yes I know, those definitions, just so damn hard to understand.
If he wanted to say that some said Google never mentioned it, fine. But on the PR shots and even the chromecast page, one of the sections is "Plug in and Play", no "plug in, plug in, and play". That is glossing over.

eahinrichsen says:

I completely agree with you. It's also important to keep in mind that the promotional material (which implies a lack of need for USB power, even if it's not directly stated) is what most people are going to see. Sure, all of us Android Central users watched the announcement video, but most people who will end up buying this probably didn't see it, and they're not going to think "Hey, the product in this commercial looks neat. Better go look up the product announcement video on YouTube to make sure I understand it correctly."

DirkBelig says:

Look at the box for any device that has an external power supply. How many show the power supply attached? Exactly. Either every single other device maker is glossing things over or Google is being unfairly slammed by dolts clutching for something to express butthurt about.

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blackbyrd says:

Good Point!

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Soapinmouth says:

They didn't gloss over it they used a tv with hdmi 1.4 which doesn't need a usb cord

Razgriz24 says:


afazel says:

If you have a TV that is fully MHL-compliant, as in you can just plug in your smartphone to the HDMI port via a USB to MHL cable and your phone displays and charges, is that enough to power the Chromecast dangle-dingleberry whatever thing?

SJonesGSO says:

I was a little fuzzy on the details after the Breakfast..I heard him mention "powered by USB" but given they never showed it connected via USB, I can certainly understand why less technological people would feel deceived.

mykpfsu says:

Just to add a little more fuel to the fire. Here is what is on the Google Chromecast page: "Get started in 3 easy steps: plug Chromecast into any HDTV, connect it to WiFi, then send videos and more from your smartphone, tablet or laptop to your TV with the press of a button" (notice the lack of mention of the power cable?).
Personally I don' care so long as the included USB cable is long enough.

Averix says:

In my mind, plugging it into my TV includes the USB power. They're just generalizing the steps. They don't say "download the app to Chrome or Android to configure the Chromecast for WiFi access to your network," but that's a key step under "connect to WiFi". They don't say that you have to launch an app to send videos (Netflix, YouTube, or Chrome). It's just a generalization of the steps.
This whole debacle is so stupid. Did people think this had a built in nuclear reactor core??? Solar powered??? Has there ever been any device actually released in the general consumer market that runs off of the minimalistic power from an HDMI port?

TheJesster says:

No, but there's been a ton of devices released to the general consumer market that run off of the power from a USB port. And what does the chromecast look like? A USB thumb drive. Do you honestly think the average consumer is going to know that most HDMI ports aren't capable of supplying the same amount of power as a USB port? And of course all the promotional pictures that show it plugged in to an HDMI port without the usb power cable hanging off are going to reinforce the idea that this thing works much like a usb thumb drive. Just plug it in and go.

It also doesn't "send videos" from the phone to TV. The video must first be online at Google Play. It doesn't "send" anything except a request of the TV to go and load the file.

Insp_Gadget says:

I wonder how this will behave when I plug it into the MHL port on my A/V receiver. I'll find out tonight. If it doesn't work from that port, I've got half a dozen other ports I can use.

briankariu says:

I read somewhere that tv's with hdmi 1.4 and above will power the device without any external power. I dunno if am rumour mongering here or will actually work

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ReggieTee says:

I looked up the specs on my TV and it lists the home 1.4 but when I disconnected the USB, it powered off.

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Saiboogu says:

There's a review on the Amazon page that claims to be from a dev who has had early access to the hardware for a few weeks. He claims that he's managed to power it off of several different HDMI ports. This is theoretically possible - the spec does allow for 5v/50ma power delivery over HDMI and evidently some range extenders and switches try to utilize this power. The spec also requires them to support an external power supply because there's no guarantee that enough power will be available. So it's conceivable that the external USB power is optional. We won't know until enough get out there for hands on testing.

hmmm says:

The design is kind of stupid since it needs the cord. But, who cares, it is only $35.

TurboFool says:

The design is also kind of necessary since most HDMI ports can't power it. I'd hardly call it stupid to design the device in a way that's necessary for it to function.

Sir Alex says:

Some people are a PITA. Make that a lot of people.

appmy says:

Alex Martonik's article about setup and first impressions also alludes to possibility of powering the device with just the HDMI port.

Is this not a possibility at all?

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jonnyships says:

It is. You need HDMI 1.4

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TemporalBeef says:

Even on the Google Play Chromecast page, it says that a USB power unit comes with the dang thing. I know, reading's hard...

skew says:

The Chromecast requires USB power on all (3) of my tv's. But all of my tv's also has usb ports no big deal. The Chromecast works great!!! Even all of my iOS devices instantly worked on the youtube apps. My son walked in with his ipad and was watching youtube and said it had a popup saying Watch in Living room and didn't know what it was. I said click it and it started playing. LOL

Explicit says:

Many people "assumed" many things with the device without actually listening to what was being said.

supert1020 says:

I have one and its sweet. I'm also one of the luck few to get Netflix free for 3 months so I only paid $11.

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glazedfaith says:

One of the lucky thousands*

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Yeah exactly, they didn't show it in the video. They never showed the USB port was powered.

tdizzel says:

I just bought a new car. None of the advertisements ever showed it at a gas station. I'm gonna be pissed if I ever have o buy gas!!!

glazedfaith says:


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NoNexus says:


Electronics need ELECTRIC

DAMN YOU GOOGLE. This is your fault and your little Nexus too.

AZwldcats says:

A little tip, most cable boxes have a USB port on them. They aren't active to do anything but they do have power. I use mind to charge my cell phones and I'm going to plug my Chromecast in to my cable box for power!

phil e says:

I have a Scientific Atlanta 8300HD cable has a front facing usb port..anyone know if it will work for this

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AZwldcats says:

Yup it will

LOL why is this even a thing? Do people have wirelessly powered TVs that are nowhere near power outlets?

MrJedi says:

Because it is one more damn cable I have to hide/route behind my wall mounted tv.

BB_Bmore says:

Everyone who is mad about this needs to get a TV with both hdmi and usb #boom problem solved!

It's not Google's fault that you need a better TV :-P

Posted From my HTC One running PlayBook 3.0 via Android Central App

Bob61 says:

No problem for me, already have features that Chromecast brings on my LG Smart TV. Really not sure what all the excitement is about. With my PS3 or XBox 360 or Tivo also have most of these features. But hey, enjoy it folks!


A $35 Chromecast is cheaper than everything you just mentioned.

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TenshiNo says:

The primary appeal, for people who don't have a smart TV or any of those kinds of devices, is that you can get this thing for just $35. Like my parents. They've got a 360, for when my kids come over, but it's attached to a 27" upstairs. Something like this would work great for their 60" downstairs.

BB_Bmore says:

If you are mad about an extra wire... Puhlease!

Posted From my HTC One running PlayBook 3.0 via Android Central App

Man so they hid the power cable. show me one xbox commercial that shows all its power cords coming out the back of it in sight.... you won't find one. Its called advertising they gotta make it look pretty.

snookasnoo says:

Of course they did gloss over it and they hid it on the web site.

metle_geek says:

Correct ne if im wrong dont most hdtvs have a usb port for pictudes or maintnance? Why not simply connect it to that alwags on usb port i used to charge ny phone off my cousins when i stayed at his house when i was too drunk to drive home XD

snookasnoo says:

Are you drunk now? Just reason...

ConTejas says:

Hate yjr playa not the game

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swimmaholic says:

I didn't know you did until I watched an unboxing video. Then again I never watched the announcement either.

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uansari1 says:

Thanks Phil! I was getting tired of people cribbing about a perceived downplaying by Google, when they were very clear on the need for USB power!

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anezarati says:

damn, i know this is an android site, but can we get some decent reporting without the fanboyism. mentioning the requirement in one sentence vs. hundreds of promos with just the dongle are hardly equivalent.

hodan says:

Who cares? Plug in the magic stick!

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mkhall says:

I'm really angry. I just bought a six-pack of cheap American beer, and so far not a single bikini model has dropped in with her girlfriends to shoot pool with me. Those ads are misleading!

For that matter, where's my pool table? Do they expect me to provide everything?!

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toddjy says:

How about the fact that you apparently need to have a TV with HDMI input. I can't seem to find that on the back of my CRT TV. (Yes, I still watch on a CRT. I also have two CRT monitors plugged into my computer. I'd have three, but I don't have the desktop space for three.)

Has anyone ever seen an advert that does not "gloss over" the facts?


Be quiet then...

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They dind't "gloss over," they lied.

An even bigger lie was the claim you could cast from Chrome on your phone to your TV. This is a bald-faced lie- there is no such functionality whatsoever. From a Chrome tab on Android, you cannot cast. There is no peer-to-peer. All you can do is ask the device to go to the Internet to a supported site (there are only 3).

And, on your phone, with Google Play, if you try to play a song file local to your phone, it will not work, saying you cannot cast "sideloaded files."

Google are liars, and this site, "Android Central," is by nature hesitant to call them out.

droidhead_1 says:

It in an icon on chrome.. It works. It was clear that it was about supported apps and files on your phone could not be Cast..

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ConTejas says:

He dumb?

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jonnyships says:

And some TVs don't need the USB port.

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BB10fanatic says:

Did they illustrate that it had to be powered by usb. You can't use an audio clip to defend a visual presentation. But then this isn't journalism.

droidhead_1 says:

OK BB fanboy!

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BB10fanatic says:

What a lack of intelligence.

ScottJ says:

It's your own name. You gave everyone all the ammo to attack you when you picked it.

BB10fanatic says:

Anyone who uses my name to attack me is an idiot. If my argument is sound that is all that matters. Like I said "a lack of intelligence".

ScottJ says:

Next time we troll the BlackBerry forums with a name like Android4Eva you may have a point. However, poking fun at BlackBerry fans is a little cruel at this point. Like shooting fish in a barrel....a very, very small school of fish in a shrinking barrel.

droidhead_1 says:


Posted via Android Central App

Anyone buys this and feels taken for a ride because the Chromecast (in most cases) requires power over USB should:
(1) Return the Chromecast and put their $35 toward the purchase of a more expensive device that does the same thing, sits under the TV and also cannot be powered over USB or
(2) realize that it's not Google's fault if your TV is incapable of powering any device over USB because it uses an older standard. This is like complaining if you saw a computer using wifi in an add and getting mad at the manufacturer after you bring it home because it didn't occur to you that you also need a wifi router.

KidAndroid says:

You mean CNET don't you lol. I called them out on their article bashing the Chromecast and all their bullshit reasons like the power & they said Google should have made it to support more apps WHAT???? Do they even know what the hell they're talking about? Devs for each app have to make their apps work with it not freaking Google Dumb Asses. They're just bashing it and making up bullshit because they're apple fans and Apple can't compete with Google pricing or features, so he'll they'll just make shit up about it lol. They wrote a very pathetic article showing they know nothing about mobile..

A guy saying it needs power in one sentence hardly means they have been openly advertising it. Its not a big deal but with a product like this people see just the device and no cables and assume thats how it works. Its not deception its just showing the unit working in best case scenario as opposed to worst case.

Blowing it out of proportions seems like the work of google haters. But to use this guys comment as a comeback is pretty lame also. Why not just let the trolls troll and be the better blog.

glazedfaith says:

If people rushed to buy this without researching it, it's nobody's fault but their own

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This is what I've gathered the chrome cast needs 5v/850ma to power the unit. HDMI 1.4 is 5v/50ma also mhl is 5v/500ma neither one is enough to power it. Unless there's a newer version of either then u need to have it powered by the USB port.

PiperCR says:

What if your tv doesn't have a usb port? Does that mean my tv has HDMI 1.4? I have a Vizio that's only about a year old.