Google is stuffing the Chromecast stocking with seven more content partners, upping the competitive ante against Apple TV, Roku, Amazon’s Fire TV Stick and other connected-TV devices leading into the holiday-shopping season.
The Internet giant’s $35 streaming-media adapter now supports video apps from Viacom’s Nickelodeon and Comedy Central; Sesame Workshop’s Sesame Go kidvid subscription service; the Epix movie channel from Viacom’s Paramount, Lionsgate and MGM; the Starz Encore movie channel; and YuppTV, which provides access to more than 170 live Indian TV channels.
In addition, Chromecast now supports TuneIn, which provides live-streaming of more than 100,000 radio stations and more than 4 million podcasts.
Analysts say it’s still early in the battle for primacy in the market for streaming-media players. In the U.S., the installed base of TV-connected video devices will stand at about 24 million units this year (up from 16 million in 2013), almost half of the 50 million total worldwide, according to research firm IHS. The number of streaming-media players in the States is projected to hit 44 million by 2017.