Google launches Chromecast TV dongle

Challenging Apple TV for your living room love...

Google has revealed a low-cost TV dongle called Chromecast that will allow you to stream media onto your TV from your tablet or smartphone

Alongside the new Nexus 7 tablet, Google has revealed its latest attempt to infiltrate the living room in the form of a TV dongle called Chromecast.

Chromecast plugs into your TV via the HDMI port and lets you stream content from your smartphone, tablet or PC straight over to the bigger box.

The search giant has kept the American price at an appealing $35 (£23) but hasn't made any announcements about a UK version yet.

Effectively turning your TV into a SmartTV and letting you stream online services like Netflix or YouTube, the Chromecast dongle pulls the content direct from the cloud rather than mirroring your device. This lets you use your phone or tablet for other things during playback.

Google is keen to play up the simplicity of the device and its cross-platform availability. Chromecast supports both Android and iOS and, although there's no word yet on Windows Phone, desktop Windows and OSX are supported through the latest version of the Chrome browser.

This isn't the first time Google's made a play for your TV set. The orb-shaped Nexus Q launched last year but fell flat and was quickly pulled from production.

Still, the drive to compete with Apple TV obviously remains strong and Mountain View clearly now feels a cheaper, simpler product is the way to go about it.

As yet, there's no word of a UK release date or availability but we'll update you as soon as we hear anything.