Google hinted at stereo sound coming soon for Chromecast and Nest speaker owners, but how was this decision made years after Nest Audio’s launch?
Google has entertained the idea of pairing Nest Audio speakers with Chromecast streaming devices to further expand the use of both products when watching TV. The Google Home family of smart speakers can be paired with Chromecast in order to give the Chromecast service commands without a remote control. Beyond that, though, there has been no way for Chromecast sound to be played from a Nest or Home speaker. Meanwhile, Google competitors have been launching new products and updates so that TV audio can be played through smart speakers.
Both Chromecast and Google Nest are established brands of Google’s, but they have not had much compatibility with each other due to the purposes they serve. Chromecast is designed for playing video streaming apps on a TV, with the first generation launching in 2013. While Chromecast has been sold as a standalone device, it is also built-in to select smart TVs from companies like Sharp, Sony, Toshiba, and Vizio. Google Nest Audio is Google’s take on the smart speaker, which was first released three years later. Nest Audio speakers have been primarily used to stream music from music services and devices, as well as to use Google Assistant for smart home living.
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Until recently, Google had no plans shared with the public for pairing Nest Audio speakers with Chromecast devices. A Google rep, though, reached out to the Wall Street Journal to verify that they are working on the idea, but nothing further beyond that. There has also been unused marketing copy leaked on Google’s website that shows further details about this concept. An excerpt from a Google Store page found in a Google search states, “With Chromecast & Google TV Nest Audio becomes your home theater sound system”. This indicates that Google TV could also potentially be paired with Nest Audio speakers, so it wouldn’t only be Chromecast devices that would benefit.
Google’s Aspirations For Home Theater Sound
Google is hoping to have Nest Audio speakers provide ambient audio for Chromecast so that any movie or TV show streamed can have speaker audio output, rather than only the built-in speaker from the TV, computer, or handheld device. Currently, Apple HomePods can provide TV audio when paired with an Apple TV 4K. Likewise, Amazon Echo speakers can be paired with Amazon Fire TV, a streaming device that works in similar ways to Chromecast. As Amazon and Apple are able to do this with their respective smart speakers, Google is looking to follow suit in order to stay competitive in the smart speaker and streaming markets.
There are no further details about the potential linking of Chromecast and Nest Audio speakers. It is still not known at this time if or when this update would release, or what devices would be supported. However, these recent findings could indicate that an announcement or update to address the issue may come soon — hopefully before the holidays as consumers begin to shop for great tech gifts. This could give Google Nest Audio speakers a new lease of life, serving a purpose for TV watchers in addition to music listeners.
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