5 years on, the Chromecast still has frustrating flaws that detract from the magic

Cast Disney with Google!
Cast Disney with Google! (Image credit: Android Central)

The original Google Chromecast was announced just over five years ago. Three generations and tens of millions of sales later, it's hard to believe this idea originally blindsided us, accompanying the launch of the second-generation Nexus 7 tablet. The idea was ever-so-simple: use your phone to control a TV-based streaming device, but let the controls happen over the internet rather than on the same old buggy direct wireless display protocols of the time.

In a perfect world, the Chromecast works amazingly and is just as magical as it was on Day 1. You open up an app and without connecting directly to the Chromecast it starts to play from the cloud. You can still use your phone as a remote while you continue to browse content and use it for other things. You can Cast from hundreds of different apps across various genres, as well as send content directly from your computer's browser. It's a fantastic technology that Google has improved on over the years, both in hardware and software.

However, for as much progress as Google has made, the Chromecast experience still has some dark spots that show up on a regular basis and it completely befuddles me. It really detracts from what's typically — but not consistently — a great experience.

The whole Cast system is still filled with instability — and it doesn't help that every app displays it all differently.

There are two distinct flavors of problems with the Chromecast. The first is the inexplicable bugginess of the whole system. When the Cast system works, it's truly magical ... and when it doesn't, you don't really have any troubleshooting steps or process to figure it out. Every few times I Cast from an app on my phone to my Chromecast or NVIDIA Shield Android TV, the app loses its link with the Cast target — the content keeps playing, but now I have no way to play/pause/rewind or adjust volume.

My only fix here is to tap that Cast button again in the app — will it reconnect? Who knows. Sometimes it reconnects and lets me control what's already playing. Most of the time it reconnects and has no idea what the Cast target is doing. In bad cases it requires force closing the app, re-connecting the Cast session and starting to play the content all over again (and not from where it was last playing, of course).

The other main problem is the inconsistency of Cast experience between apps. Google built a standard for having an app use the Cast protocol to send media to a Cast target, but was implemented with dramatic irregularity. Every app has a different-looking interface for starting a Cast session, and even further differentiation in how ongoing controls are handled. The only thing that's consistent between apps is the Cast button itself — everything after that point is fair game to be different and confusing. Things go even further when you talk about the differences between audio and video casting. Then you get back to the performance irregularities. Some apps, like Google's own and Netflix, are really good about keeping the Cast session alive — others, like ESPN+ and NBC Sports (to name two of many), are horrendous at keeping that Cast session active.

The increased power of the latest Casting devices has somewhat eased the frustration. The newest Chromecast Ultra is powerful enough to swap between streams relatively quickly, as are the high-end Android TV boxes and even the latest TVs that have Cast built in. A Chromecast Ultra can re-acquire a stream and start playing far faster than a first-generation Chromecast, but it hasn't eliminated the bugginess that causes it to drop that connection in the first place.

If you're going to have the 'it just works' mentality, you need to make it just work.

Google is constantly evolving the Cast protocol to handle higher quality streams, enhanced two-way communication, and of course more consistency. However, it also needs to go back and look at the core tenets of the experience to really lock them down. The app-provided interface for Casting needs to be tightened up with some consistency, and the whole system needs to have more redundancy or checks or something so that it doesn't so often lose its connection between the Cast sender and Cast receiver.

People complain about the lack of a true navigable interface for the Chromecast, and I honestly don't have a problem in principle with not having one — that is, so long as the Cast system works as intended. As soon as the wheels start to come off, you're left in a weird place of having no idea what's wrong with the system, and that's a bad user experience all around. If you're going to stick with the "it just works" mentality, you need to make it just work.

What do you think of the Chromecast?

Do you have similar issues? Let us know in the comments below.

Andrew was an Executive Editor, U.S. at Android Central between 2012 and 2020.

  • I still struggle to even find a use for mine. My TV has built-in casting and the only time I ever find it useful is for streaming home movies of my kids. For anything else, it's not at all convenient.
  • Ever since I experienced Fire Stick, I stopped caring about Chromecast. The remote with Alexa just works. No phone, no connections issues. I never realized how cumbersome Chromecast can be until I bought my wife the Fire Stick. I plan on buying a 2nd one for the living room.
  • I have one on every TV. They're great
  • I am the opposite. I bought the original Chromecast and used it a little but not much. I then bought a fire stick and like you, loved the remote and the fact it had apps on it. I then bought another stick and a 4K FireTV. I have now gone back to Chromecast exclusively. The FireTV and sticks were ridiculously slow and shows would constantly pause for no reason or just lock up. When I did want to cast a video or pictures from my phone it was next to impossible. With the Nvidia Shield as my main TV device I have a remote and a Chromecast with all of my apps and zero issues with speed or buffering. I put the Chromecast Ultras in my other rooms and all of my buffering issues etc. are no longer present. If at some point I want to have a remote in my bedroom again I will just get another Shield
  • Couldn't have said it better - tbh it's that bugginess (and the lack of physical navigation) that led me to ditch chromecast and grab a Fire TV stick. Haven't looked back.
  • I have Youtube TV and the I regularly get drops and "are you still casting messages". The idea is great, but like many things google development seems to take a backseat to the next "gee whiz" service.
  • I'm just annoyed that the first gen Chromecast cannot display the weather overlay (and I refuse to believe there's a technical reason).
  • What weather overlay - in the corner by the clock or something else? I have a first gen and get the weather in the bottom right corner..
  • I have a 1st gen and also get weather overlays.
  • I believe Tiuri might be referring to when you ask Google Assistant to show you the weather and she puts it up on the TV (Chromecast)
  • Better go in your settings in the Home app. I have 2 1st gen and 2 2nd gen, and the displays are exactly the same. The 2nd gen just buffer more quickly.
  • I'm so happy you wrote this piece. I hope Google sees it. I have the exact same problems.. I currently use the Chromecast Audios (grouped or solo) far more then regular cc. I still have the originals and the still work fine for the most part, I just have to connect to my 2.5GHz network on my phone, no biggie. I only use them for YouTube on the TV, nothing is better for YouTube than a cc. Occasionally I'll rent a movie. Otherwise, I stopped using them. The firestick is my primary device because it's much easier to have an actual remote for apps like, Direct TV Now.
  • I am not having any of the issues you have experienced. I tell my Google Home to play something on my tv, and it plays. I never get connection issues. Maybe all my units are the only good ones! That being said, My TV that has chromecast built in has a remote, and I can choose an app and play stuff, or I can use my phone. I probably use the remote 75% of the time. whereas the 25% where i can't remember where I left the remote I use the phone or google home to say what i want. My other 2 TVs are chromecast only, and I love the youtube one because our family can keep adding to the queue, until one family member decided to skip ahead!!! ugh. lol Anyway, I don't have many issues with it, but I also have a Roku I use almost never, and a Fire stick I never use.
  • I do have occasional problems you described but still mostly use it for casually watching YouTube videos by casting it. Mostly use Apple TV for watching any kind of streaming services. I also have a fire cube TV on another HDMI input which I use occasionally. But don't think I can use Chromecast as my main streaming TV stick.
  • For me it works okay. My mom also loved the combo of Chromecast + Netflix. There is sometimes he crashes and so, but in 90% of time, it works nice for me.
  • Even with the quirks, I use it over the Play app on my Web OS LG TV. I mainly use it to watch a movie when going to sleep so I really don't fiddle with it after the movie starts playing.
  • I've only experienced the dropping cast issue a few times. Never really bothered me cause I just tap the icon and it starts working just fine. MY biggest 'bug'/'issue' is the inconsistency of the audio controls... sometimes it goes to that horrible gray bar style of volume control, where you have to click a trillion times on the down/up volume buttons to get any noticeable change... and other times you get the amazing blue one that only takes one or two presses to get to the level you want. My only few dropped casts has been when I created a long playlist on youtube (like, 4 hours long) and it dropped once when I hadn't touched my phone during that entire time. Another weird issue I've had, is that the CC's don't always show up. I have to disable wifi, then re-enable wifi, and then they show up for most apps. For VLC I have to completely force close the app, disable wifi, re-enable wifi, then re-open VLC. With the latest few preview updates, these issues have all vanished so far. Haven't had a CC not show up, havn't had a connection drop, haven't had that disgustingly terrible gray volume experience. Only thing I still don't like about it, is that if I tell my Google Home to do something on the Chrome Cast (ex: play The King of Random on YouTube on the bedroom chromecast) then it just says "alright, playing youtube playlist on bedroom chromecast" and just plays a generic playlist that ALWAYS starts with the exact same Markiplier video... Or, if I ask it to "pause the bedroom chromecast" it wont do anything. . . really annoying... it should just default to pausing ANYTHING that's playing on that chromecast.... Not force you to be super hyper specific "pause youtube on bedroom chrome cast". Although, once you've done that once, you can continue within a short period of time with just 'resume youtube' or 'turn up the volume for youtube' and it'll "just work"... but if you wait more than about 2 minutes, it wont do anything...
  • In the last few months, it has started the streams in lower quality until I skip back 30 seconds then it streams in HD. Annoying. The other is no way to stream from my plex server when the cable goes out (northeastern winters tend to do this). Roku has no problem with it.
  • Plex's Chromecast session handling is the absolute worst, I'm wondering if this is even a known issue.
  • 100% agree with your takes. I bought the Chromecast with the hope that I wouldn’t need a streaming box. Despite my being a tech enthusiast, I abhor tech clutter. I noticed quickly that things were inconsistent. Like your experience, my biggest pain point was the link between the Chromecast and my tablet or phone. I always had issues controlling play, pause, etc. due to the loss of communication. I caved and bought an Apple TV and have been very happy with it. I use the Chromecast for Spotify streaming only because I don’t like AirPlay’s manner of handling it.
  • I love my chromecast. I don't have any of the network/wireless problems described in this article. Maybe because I don't overload my wireless network then blame the chromecast for poor performance. If your looking for a simple streaming device that doesn't burden you with another remote and bloated/laggy navigation software the chromecast can't be beat. Not to mention its also one of the cheapest.
  • Chromecast is another piece of Google Hardware be it phones or what ever Google Hardware is just never as good as it should be there's always some glitch some problem
  • If you open the Google Home app you can always control whatever is playing on any of the TVS with content being played. You can pause, play, adjust volume and stop casting. So if your poorly designed app does lose its "connection" just open the google home app.
  • I was going to say the same thing. I rarely get cast drops these days, but when I do I just have a Nova Launcher gesture that opens the Home app and the cast appears straight back into my nav drawer.
  • I use my chromecast everyday and wouldn't give it up, but it definitely has it's problems. And most of them will likely never get fixed. Typical Google product really...
  • OMG, thank you so much for posting about this, Andrew. This is 100% accurate to my experience. The lose of link between phone/tablet and the Chromecast annoy the crap out of me. I thought it was just me at first. It's made me want to ditch the Chromecast many times. It's just so easy!
  • Just open the Google Home app. Whatever device you are casting too comes up and you can control it directly.
  • I have been using nothing but cast for the past 2 years and rarely run into an issue with my cast device losing the connection and having to relink from the device (Pixels XL, Vizio Tablet, Lenovo Tab 4) I personally have loved my experience with using cast and I loved it so much when they added the ability to have multiple devices linked to the cast target at the same time. (start cast from one device and continue from another) Add a Google Home and the experience is even better. Have a CCU connected to my Vizio with built in cast, and a normal CC in the bedroom. Plan on getting more when I get 2 more TV's for the house.
  • I don't care much for mine. I try to use it to stream Kodi but I get stopped because of unsupported codecs. Other than that it works but is usually laggy.
  • This is why I barely use any of my Chromecasts anymore. It doesn't matter if I am using one of my Android phones, my iPhone, or my iPad... the Chromecast will always lose connection with the app that I am using. The only way to gain any control back is to use the Google Home app but the original app usually has no idea what is going on any more despite thinking it is still in control of the casting process. Ugh.
  • Nvidia Shield fixes all of these issues. It has a remote, apps installed and you can cast to it. Plus its much faster than any of the Amazon products
  • 1. Yes, some apps do not keep the cc control UI live or active, or the control will disappear from the app and appear at the top of the android screen, or one of these two will work and the other won't -- very frustrating. Some apps need other tricks when the cc icon disappears (Netflix app).
    2. CC Ultra: if you want a wired connection you CANNOT have hardware between the router and the cc, ie a switch. This has been a years-long problem that Google has not taken seriously but which users in forums have been trying to resolve ( https://productforums.google.com/forum/#!topic/chromecast/BQqGCWCBJpk )
  • Had these problems until I switched to the Google router. I was using the standard router from my ISP and it was horrid. Never had a drop out or missing icon since.
  • Same here. Google WIfi is the way to go
  • I have a lot (20ish) of cast devices, far too many since everyone room has a Google home, a Chromecast and a Chromecast audio device in it. What we need are two things to make that manageable. First, alphabetic order in the home app so you can actually find the device you want to modify. Next the ability to turn off casting on the Google homes since why would i ever cast to a crappy speaker when there are better sounding devices there? Or set room targets so the three devices only publish the services you want so bedroom audio goes to speakers, video to tv without selecting them explicitly. The Chromecast hdmi devices cannot participate in a Chromecast audio multi zone group which is just weird, so my receivers have both a Chromecast hdmi device and a Chromecast audio for multi zone but casting to the audio now requires me to change inputs. If hdmi dongles were compatible with multi zone i could just leave them input on the Chromecast hdmi single all there time. If you embrace the concept, you find that Google has never actually tested the usability of while house Chromecast because the ergonomics suck. I haven't had disconnection issues but i suppose i used different apps and good WiFi coverage but the inconsistencies in the apps do surprise me. I stick with the good ones.
  • This app has the power to be awesome, but often does not live up to expectation. If you fall asleep while casting, often you wake up to lost connection, or casting ended. If it disconnects for any reason, often you need to reboot to connect back to it. This is frustrating. Also mirror casting is a disaster. It only allows this on certain devices. Not helpful, please fix. Mirror casting is a great option, and would love to be able to use it again.
  • My biggest issue has been with all my Samsung Phones, from the S5 to my Note 8, very buggy, it will not stream consistently. Plays for a minute, drops connection and continues to play on the phone. To stream I use my Xiaomi Mi Max 2, streams with little or no issues, I use Popcorntime, Netflix, Prime, etc....
  • Let's face it. Google just doesn't give a damn. Why buy hardware from this company?
  • I didn't like the way chromecast only worked with select apps and required wifi so I've been using miracast since 2015. Complete screen mirroring with no wifi needed.
  • Agree. I wish Chromecast had a mirroring function that worked without WiFi. I mostly use it for mirroring than casting and wish it had Miracast support.
  • I have an Ultra in our living room and a Roku. I use the Roku far more. It's just easier to browse on that and have a dedicated remote. The Ultra has been relegated to random casting of pics/videos and party tricks with the Google Home. Also, with small kids that don't necessarily have a device to cast from, it kind of makes using Chromecast kind of difficult all the time.
  • I bought the Chromecast second version to stream from my phone and chromebook. The connection haa always been spotty and buggy. I bought a Roku stick after that and is the only one I use now. Used Chromecast recently again and even after updating, it's still buggy. Google really needs to get a good working update out. Roku has been working great for 2+ years now and was worth the $50 I spent for it. Chromecast hasn't been worth the $35. 😥
  • Not sure why so many have connection isssues. I am sporting a router from 2009 with about 20 devices connected and have only experienced the connection loss, from a casted device, a couple times.
  • I use my chromecast everyday. I can honestly say that I have not had any problems with my device. As long as my wifi is hooked up properly and my phone has a wifi connection it has been smooth sailing. It works well when guest are over and I use google photos to show off some memories on the big hd screen. Works with my littler sister's iphone, but not as well as it does with my Galaxy S7. I also have a roku device for another tv and while I love the fact that it works without using your phone, there are certain things I can do with the chromecast that make it very useful for me. Excited to see what they do with the next upgrade.
  • I agree, browsing for content on my phone is so much faster then the interface of a device with a remote. Plus the CC has the added benefit that you can still browse for something while content is playing / casting
  • I laugh because the comments on AC are the exact opposite of what is on AP.
  • I get the issue with the interface not staying on the screen but clicking the cast icon fixes it every time for me. Otherwise I'm happy to not use a remote for casting apps. Using a phone app and being able to quickly type a search is much easier to me than having to navigate with arrows or a dpad on a remote.
  • I love(?) my Chromecast. At least, I used to. I absolutely agree with this article and have, on many occasions, flirted with the idea of switching to a Fire Stick (coincidently, what you call Gonorrhea in the penis). The bugginess has caused me to watch all of my content on my Xbox and completely skip the Chromecast. However, since recently getting a Google Home, I've been using the Chromecast more. I still get the bugginess but I have more of a reason to use it now.
  • It ain't perfect, but it works well the vast majority of the time. Had mine for 4 years now.
  • Bought a Roku, it's a great streaming device and includes the three main streaming services in the UK and it doesn't drain my phone battery...
  • I dont understand people's issues with Chromecast ive used a regular for years & got the ultra about a year ago never any issues i can use my apps Animania, Terrarium, animedlr & mobdro along with casting my music from pandora & casting my droid phone to my tv to play emulaters with a bluetooth controller lol a googlecast is just a stream or mirror platform it has no memory to store apps ... Anyway I don't get this article cause my chromecast has never been buggy or unstable
  • For me, switching to controlling the TV completely through voice commands on my Google Home alleviated all of the tiny issues with Chromecast. Even if I start the stream on my phone, and even if it disconnects on my phone, I still just control everything through Google Home, Chromecast's ultimate companion.
  • I haven't had any of these issues. I have a 1st Gen CC and the newest CC Ultra and connection is great. I make sure my CC's are on the 2.5Ghz connection instead of the 5g one, where I'll put the rest of my devices. My gripes with the CC are these: other apps are removing their services or not compatible at all with CC such as Amazon Prime video. I recently had to buy a Fire Stick on Prime Day specifically for this. And networks like AMC and/or the CW don't have compatibility yet or maybe ever. I also have never tried Fox Now, Showtime or CBS All Access via CC, so I can't say whether they work or not, but simply the slowness or non existence of major apps/networks to be on CC is a downside for me. I also feel it's rather dumb for Google Home to not be fully integrated with Google Play Movies and TV when it comes to the voice activation. I can play something just fine from Netflix or YouTube by telling Google Home to play it on a CC, but it can't yet play movies and TV shows from my own damn library.
  • I can't speak to all those apps or networks but the CW and CW Seed apps both have Chromecast support.
  • To fix the lost connection issue, assign each Chromecast a static IP address through the Home app. I had this problem consistently until I assigned static IPs now I literally never experience the issue.
  • Nailed it. The constant disconnects are the most annoying part of Chromecast, and it's why I try to use some other tech as often as I can (apps on Roku usually). Google isn't alone though. I recently borrowed an Apple TV and streamed music from an iPad to it. Same thing happened. Eventually disconnected and I could no longer control the music. Is there no kind of keepalive signal that could be sent every minute or so to keep these things connected??
  • I moved to Roku and PlayOn, which works great every time. And it's free.
  • Like all things Google creates, It starts off as a great concept with lots of possibilities that never get realized because Google drops it and moves onto the next thing they intend to make. Many of the problems the Chromecast faces is due to shoddy implementation and lack of standardized support that could make the device far more useful than it is. Limiting it to only Googlecast services and discovery was it's major flaw as it doesn't support many of the standards other casting devices support such as DLNA, Airplay (zeroconf) and the MS cast file system. It didn't help that no Desktop PC or Mac support was available as all you could do was screen cast or cast web pages from Chrome. Desktops left a big hole and really made the CCast useful only to Tablet and Phone users. The Control system has never really worked well, the CEC controls rarely worked so you could not use the TV remote to control unless you had a very new TV. And before the device could even get past it's infancy they quickly replaced and pushed their Next idea (AndroidTV) which Google also abandoned and if not for 3rd Party manufacturers use of it (like the Shield) that too would be a dead system. If Google was smart they would have created an App to make all Android Devices a Chromecast target and supported those other methods of casting other than Googlecast.
    They just never stick to an idea and develop it to it's full potential and that is a habit Google needs to break itself from.
  • While you aren't wrong with these issues, I seemed to have them more when I was on AT&T's DSL. Now that I have moved, and have a 100 MBPS cable internet connection, these issues are still present, but very few and far between. Not saying the internet connection is the issue, but I just don't have these issues much anymore. I loves the Chromecast experience. I have 3. 2 are regular gen 2's, and 1 is an Ultra.
  • Overall, I am still amazed at the functionality of Chromecast. Usually, it just works and apps just work with it (except annoyingly Dishanywhere!). I do have Pixel and Nexus devices and I understand the issues that Andrew describes are far less common with those than other Android devices. But, from time to time, I do experience the "unsyncing" of the casting device to the Chromecast. On the otherhand, multi speaker casting works flawlessly. The easy integration with Google Home is a real asset, and that has been there from the start. So, while I do get the points Andrew makes, on the whole very satisfied with Chromecast.
  • OMG so I'm not alone !
    I agree, this is soooo anoying. On my TV with built-in chromecast it will succeed to connect only 20% of the time. I have better success with the other unit which is a Chromecast original version. Also, I wish we could run the Chromecast player software on Linux boxes.
  • Problem is everything has some issues. People like to take sides, if you dont side with chromecast then all of a sudden it has "more" problems that others. I rarely have issues with casting, most issues are probably due to other parties apps, or people not knowing how to use their stuff or networks. Ive never tried firestick so can't comment but no need to because for me, chromecast just works.
  • Completely agree with this. The only time I cast now is when I want to watch a youtube video on my TV.
  • The no remote thing is what keeps the CC seriously limited. ie what happens when company/family is over and they don"t have YOUR phone? The no remote thing is beyond stupid.
  • they join either via wifi or the guest code. What's so hard about that?
  • I have two first gen Chromecast and a Nexus player. The disconnect issues do appear on apps when streaming but it is only with certain apps. When the problems happen, I assume that the app authors did not correctly implement the Chromecast standards and report the bugs. Some apps have not resolved the issues, others that have received the reports now work perfectly. I would like Google to test and certify the functionality for all apps that are Chromecast enabled.
  • I got CC right as it came out and have loved it since. There are a few hiccups here and there, but simply unplugging the micro USB from the back and then plugging it back in seems to resolve any issue I encounter. I have a CC on every TV I own and they are used daily for Youtube, Netflix, Twitch, Plex, and Videostream. I don't think a device with such a small number of bugs need a whole article trying to flame it. Find something meaningful to write about.
  • I'm so glad you are having a good experience with your CC. I did also for the first 6 months or so. Then wham, Bugginess. No new phone, no changes to my TV, and its not a small number of bugs. The issues keep growing in frequency and type of issues for myself and as these comments show, for many people that unplugging the micro USB from the back doesn't always work. Sometimes even rebooting doesn't work and factory reset may work right away or has to be done several times and or TV unplugged for a while. I'm very glad to see this article and the many comments that confirm it is a widespread, ongoing issue.
  • I use Chromecast with YouTubeTV, another Google product. It does exactly what you say....loses connection between my phone and the TV, then I can no longer pause, fast forward, or rewind. I can even reboot my phone and the TV continues playing the channel I lost connection on. Can't get it to quit! I'm a Google fanboy, but this is really bad.
    Recently two FireTVs (Amazon). Very impressive product. Easy install. Improves image quality. Love it.
  • I can honestly say I've no problems with mine. All work great. Even a couple originals are still doing the job without issue.
  • I think I have a second gen one (almost positive it isn't gen one) & it does everything I want it to do. I don't have any complaints about it. It does what it advertises, nothing more, nothing less.
  • I have the Nexus player and never have issues with casting. But my mother in law has the Chromecast dongle and it loses connections all the time.
  • Agree with all of the above. But I like to add to that the awful background feature. Maybe Americans leave the TV on all day but when I am done watching, I want the TV to turn off. It would if the chromecast device would stop sending an HDMI signal. But no, it insists to show distracting background pictures. As a workaround I made an album with back images but the TV still stays on. Via ARC chromecast can turn on the TV. I would love to see it turn off when I am done watching video. Also, when casting Google music to my TV, most of the time I don't want to see the album art on my 60" TV. I just want the sound. But no, there is no option to just have a black background. It's a pitty these little things are not thought through.
  • Oh... And chromecast ultra has an overheating issue running at 4k. I solved it by strapping an aluminium cooling block to the body using a cable tie.
  • Very interesting ... how long do you stream for before it overheats? I haven't noticed this.
  • I've had one and rarely use it. It's been ok. My parents have one and constantly use it, they don't have any issues with it. Chromecast audio on the other hand has been a mess. I have two of them and stopped using them. Spotify stream would constantly stop on both for no apparent reason or go out of sync with the Spotify app. Really disappointed with them.
  • The only problem I have is the occasional UI drop on my phone, which going to the Home app solves. Then again, I have a Huawei phone that's aggressive about closing background apps. Other than that it just works, which is exactly what I need it to do. The Fire is just way too slow, and with a toddler the remote tended to get lost. With the CC a phone or tablet is always around in the house. In fact, every TV we'll buy going forward in my household will have CC/Android TV baked in.
  • Thank you. You've expressed my daily struggles with the chromecast perfectly. I have no doubt the chromecast can work perfectly, because the Netflix experience is pretty damn good with almost no disconnects. But other apps, even HBO are garbage when it comes to chromecast support. Sometimes when you hit the pause button it will keep playing and then be totally out of sync with your app. The difference in apps quality makes me think it's a coding issue on the app side but maybe Google can do something to force a better experience everywhere.
  • Glad to read this article, I have been fighting for days just to watch a movie. I give up, it work for years and then one day all my Chromecast start crashing, crashing the wifi, says they need set up again after crash unless reboot it. Rebooted, factory reset router, wireless, modem, and Chromecast. Still no luck. At least I can go to bed knowing it's a normal issue. BTW, who has a router 10 to 15 feet from the Chromecast, I thought that was a joke from Google support.
  • Yeah. That is a joke. Google support needs to come up with solutions and not lame responses...
  • I have a similar experience. My CC Audio plays perfectly fine when I'm streaming Spotify up until the moment I start up another app. Remote control is then a goner. Most of the time it picks up the way it should work whenever I go into the Google Home app or when I open Spotify again, but there are times that only closing all apps will fix the issue.
    Just a pity.
  • Yes. I agree. It's a pity...
  • Google needs to just make a $35 Android TV stick and ditch Chromecast. Nuff said.
  • I have the original and the second gen, no actual problems with the streaming. The only problem I have had come from youtube mostly and most other google apps. It forgets that it is connected and I have to reconnect which causes it to restart and lose my queue. It doesn't do this with my roku. One thing I have noticed it needs is the ability to easily switch devices, I leave my room and it has a toggle that lets me select the living room, ect.
  • You would think that there would be more ways to cast video from your phone's storage to the Chromecast. All I have used is Avia and All Cast. Sometimes they can be unreliable.
  • Nailed it on the head with this article. I still use the Chromecast, but not as a core TV device. I switched to Nvidea Shield TV and use its remote (which also loses its connection, but that's another article). One issue Chromecast is up against that isn't its fault is how inconsistent and oft-times rotten different media apps' UI's and functionalities are. But in the end, if you want to stream Amazon Prime, Chromecastibg from your phone isn't an option.
  • Losing the cast target happens way too often on Plex :( I can just hope I don't have to pause it until the movie/show ends.
  • We bought our Chromecast in 2016 and We couldn't be happier with what its does for us, We use it to stream music from our Windows 10 (Virtual Machine) on Ubuntu Studio and get a program called MK Chromecast to stream the audio 99.8% of the time it works flawlessly sometimes we have to give the Chromecast a kick up the butt and it behaves itself again but on the whole it works for us.
  • I have a 1st gen and 2nd gen chromecast and I have issues with both. Sometimes my phone wont show that a chromecast is available. I will try to cast video to my family room TV but it sometimes will only show my bdrm tv. Vice versa... the chromecast and my phone are on the same wifi network but my phone sometimes cant detect the chromecast. Its frustrating when that happens.
  • I've had an Ultra for over a year, no issues, although I only used it occasionally and only for YouTube & Google Photos. I'd casted from Android, iOS and from the Chrome browser in Windows 10 here and there. Just this week I cancelled cable TV so it's been used a lot for Netflix and it's holding up like a champ. My other TV has a PlayStation 3 connected to it so I run Netflix & YouTube from the PS3 apps from time to time. If the PS3 ever breaks down I'll probably replace it with another Chromecast.
  • So glad someone is speaking out about this. I have had 2 Chromecast dongles for 2 years now have used them a lot. I loved them! But lately, the thrill is gone. The "bugginess" keeps increasing in frequency and types of issues. I'm just about ready in invest in a couple of ROKU devices. Google needs to get serious about these issues and not just ignore them. If more people complain and or switch, maybe they will get the message. I found this article because I'm having challenges with both devices at the same time and I was googling to see if there was another Google Home/Chromecast outage like last month. It appears there is not an outage, just more crazy Chromecast bugginess. So... as I have to do quite frequently now, I will reboot and possibly have to do factory resets again. Almost fed up with Chromecast...
  • My Chromecast works 100% of the time, when I'm alone, when someone else is there it's about 50%.
    Same goes for my Google Home and Google Assistant on my phone.
  • multi-kulti, gender Google = lack of truly intelligent engineers = inferior nazzi censoring company that deserves to be hated
  • I am glad I saw this review. I suffer from the NBCsports app bug. It works fine when watching live events and such but when it comes to replays It craps out on me a lot. When I watch a baseball game it will crap out randomly anywhere from the 1st to last inning and if you don't catch it in time you have to start over and TRY to pick up where it crapped out..sometimes you can catch the progress bar frozen on a spot so you have a idea where to restart again but for the most part its a pain in the ass..I still like chromecast and I am glad thats its not my service or the apps fault..but still wish they would fix this bug
  • After all this time since the Chromecast has been released, it's a shame that Google hasn't already evolved it into a set-top box with a dedicated OS which can run apps natively from the device w/o the need to stream to it. The other competitors' offerings (based on Android) offer the Chromecast capability and also allow users to mirror cast and install apps on them. Google seems to have stopped caring a/b the Chromecast as they are distracted by a slew of other ulterior passion projects.