9 Tips, Tricks, And Hacks For Google Chromecast

by: Joseph On  Monday, December 16, 2013

Tips, Tricks, And Hacks For Google Chromecast

9 Tips, Tricks, And Hacks For Google Chromecast

Google is seeking to do for TV and video streaming what they did for search engines with Google Chromcast, which gives you access to a variety of features involving the transfer of video from your tiny computer screen to your (presumably) much larger TV. But there are some little user-end tips and tricks that have already been discovered, some of which are outlined here.

With these tricks, you can work your way around some of the limitations of Google Chromecast, getting the most out of your hard-earned $35. Try them out – or just keep watching regular TV, like an idiot.

Play Local Files On Your TV

For whatever reason, this feature of Google Chromecast is flying under the radar, even though it’s a big deal for a lot of users. With Chromecast, you can play any local files on your computer on any connected device – basically, this means you can play anything on your computer on your TV.

Cast Your Desktop

While Chromecast is mostly being billed as a way to stream video to your TV and other devices, it can also be used in a more nuts-and-bolts fashion by casting your entire desktop to another screen. This could be helpful for giving presentations or if you’re just really interested in showing people all the weird browser tabs you have open.

Adjust Video Quality for Better Streaming

Here’s a Chromecast tip that works similarly to toggling different YouTube video qualities when your internet connection isn’t the best and you want your video stream to stop pausing to buffer. Just adjust your streaming quality under Chromecast’s options, and that stuttering video stream should be a distant memory.

Keep Full-Screen Video During Multitasking

One potential problem when using Chromecast to stream with your browser is the interruption of full-screen playback when you need to check your email. But there’s a quick workaround for this – just hit alt-tab and you’ll be away from the video on your computer while it continues uninterrupted on your TV.

HDMI Audio Extractor

Audiophiles were no-doubt horrified to learn that the small Chromecast gadget compresses audio and video into one stream that can’t be divided up (for, say, sending audio to your surround sound speakers). But if you have an HDMI audio extractor like the one in the video above, this is no longer a problem.

Streaming Audio

Weirdly, the ability to stream audio files from iTunes or Windows Media Player isn’t an automatically available feature of Google Chromecast. But it is possible, and doesn’t necessarily require any new software – just an app like the one shown in the video above.

Download the Chromecast Wallpapers

Even if you don’t have Chromecast yet, there’s at least one way for you to get a taste of the Chromecast experience for free. When it’s not being used, Chromecast displays a series of wallpapers as a kind of screen saver, and someone on the internet has collected them all for download here. Or you could just watch the above video, which is nice too.


One of the coolest (and most publicized) Chromecast features is the way that it turns portable devices into remote controls. As of now this is limited by what kind of apps these devices can control, but an app like Leapcast blows these limits out of the water, as seen above.

Factory Reset

Here’s a general catch-all tip that thankfully applies to your Google Chromecast. If you fiddle around with it too much and can’t figure out how to get it back to how you started, just give it the ol’ factory reset, which you can do in under a minute. Don’t believe me? Take a look at the video above and see how.