I love technology. It is something that draws the little child out in me. It’s got to be new. It’s got to be flashy. And it must have bells and whistles. Do you agree?
This week I went out and purchased a Chromecast. Now, if you’re not familiar with what that is, I’ll explain.
Chromecast is a dongle device, no larger than a thumb drive. The end of the unit is shaped to fit the HDMI port on your TV.
I cannot tell you enough how cool this device is. You plug it in your television, follow the directions to set it up and it just works. It streams content from your phone, tablet and computer to a TV. I believe every pastor, minister or traveling business man must add this item to their laptop bags.
Let me give you three things the Chromecast can do for you:
- It plays Netflix. Now, that may seem not very pastor like. But, if you spend time in hotels, and there’s nothing on television, you can plug in your Chromecast and play Netflix from your tablet, computer or phone and stream it straight to the television in your room.
It will mirror your phone to the television screen. One application I love for Small Groups is Right Now Media. This is the Netflix of Bible Studies. What’s great is, if you run a Small Group, share the video content from your phone to your screen. No need for extra cables and set-up. It just works.
Use it for Powerpoint. Microsoft Office is great. If you are able to utilize the web app version of Office, you can cast your computer presentation and control it yourself. I use Office on both my phone and computer. The best part, if you allow access to the Chromecast in a board meeting, others can cast their projections to the screen as well.
Now, I will say. If you have a slow wifi network, Chromecast will lag on the screen. We used it at church for streaming content in our whole church leadership training and because the network was running slow, the video lagged at times.
This is not a perfect solution. But if you’re looking for something that will give you the edge next time you’re away from home, this device will allow you to do just that. Even if it doesn’t work while speaking on stage, controlling your powerpoint presentation, you know you at least have a neat way to watch your youtube and netflix videos in your hotel room or at home.