Chromecast with Google TV update finally makes headphones work much better

Close-up of Chromecast with Google TV HD
(Image credit: Andrew Myrick / Android Central)

What you need to know

  • Users can now easily pair their headphones with the TV when in proximity with a new audio output switcher tile in the Quick Settings menu.
  • Fast Pair expedites the pairing process, with compatible devices triggering a pop-up when the case is opened, making headphone availability visible.
  • Originally announced in 2022, the updates are now rolling out, including bug fixes and performance improvements.

Google has finally released a long-overdue update for Chromecast with Google TV (4K), delivering the promised Fast Pair for headphones and a quick settings audio output switcher.

As spotted by 9to5Google, the Chromecast with Google TV now lets users easily pair their headphones with the TV when they're nearby. Additionally, a fresh audio output switcher tile has made its way to the Quick Settings menu.

Google had been talking about these updates for quite some time, emphasizing them as top priorities for Chromecast with Google TV (4K). Initially announced in 2022, these awaited features are finally here. Now, you can seamlessly use some of the best headphones with the streaming dongle. The update is currently rolling out, along with the usual bug fixes and performance improvements.

The latest improvements come in handy for those who switch between headphones and speakers while enjoying on-screen entertainment, addressing a common annoyance for some users.

If you've been using Bluetooth headphones with a Google TV, chances are you've run into the somewhat irritating problem where switching from headphones to speakers isn't as quick as you'd like. Depending on your hardware, it often involves navigating through multiple screens to locate the right setting for changing your audio output.

Fast Pair brings some clear advantages by expediting the pairing between headphones and your TV. With a compatible pair like the Galaxy Buds, for instance, when you open the case, a pop-up appears in the top right corner of your screen, indicating the availability of your headphones. By selecting it, you'll be directed to the Connect screen to seamlessly make the switch.

In addition to Fast Pair, there's a fresh audio output tile now in the control center of your TV. This allows you to easily toggle between different speakers and headphones, as well as the TV speakers.

The fresh audio switcher comes in handy by addressing a minor yet bothersome issue. Previously, switching between different audio outputs involved navigating through what seemed to be endless settings screens. The new feature simplifies this process.

The update should automatically roll out to your hardware, but if you don't see the new features, you can manually check by heading to Settings > System > About > System Update. It's a 169MB update, so the download should be quick if your internet connection is solid.

Jay Bonggolto
News Writer & Reviewer

Jay Bonggolto always keeps a nose for news. He has been writing about consumer tech and apps for as long as he can remember, and he has used a variety of Android phones since falling in love with Jelly Bean. Send him a direct message via Twitter or LinkedIn.