Chromecast is America's number one streaming device

  • AFP
  • Updated: Jan 31, 2015 11:05 IST

Google's simple dongle for pushing content to TV screens has already been used 1 billion times.

According to Google's Chief Business Officer, Omid Kordenstani, the Chromecast has been an unmitigated success story.

Use is up 60% since it was launched 18 months ago and its growing popularity is as much down to the growing number of apps that support the device as it is to the fact that at just $35 it is extremely accessible and affordable.

In December, research and business intelligence firm Parks Associates, published data showing that over the first nine months of 2014 alone, 10% of American broadband households had bought some form of set-top box or streaming device. Its figures showed that the Google Chromecast had become the country's second most popular streaming device, accounting for 20% of sales and pushing the Apple TV into third place. The Amazon Fire TV also managed to grab fourth place, accounting for 10% of sales, which was very impressive considering that it was only launched in April of that year.

While discussing the Chromecast as part of Google's quarterly earnings call, Kordenstani said that according to data from NPD Group, the device has now become the most popular streaming device in the US. Meaning that as well as keeping ahead of Apple, it has now leapfrogged Roku's range of streaming devices and set-top boxes too.

As well as highlighting that Google has a serious hit on its hands, the Chromecast's usage numbers also points to what is going to be one of the biggest consumer trends for 2015 -- streaming content to a TV rather than watching linear, scheduled programming.

Parks Associates forecasts that by the end of 2015, 25% of US broadband homes will be streaming their TV content and this is in turn driving TV stations, such as HBO, to develop standalone streaming services that consumers can access without a cable subscription.

During its own conference call earlier this week, Apple's CEO, Tim Cook, confirmed that the company has now sold a total of 25 million Apple TV set-top boxes which, like the Chromecast allow users to stream content from their computer, smartphone or tablet to the television and to browse the internet and launch number of apps including for Netflix, Hulu and ESPN.

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