Software & Apps Apps The 12 Best Free Chromecast Apps For Android in 2020 Stream photos, music, live TV, and more to another screen By Ryan Dube Writer Ryan Dube is a freelance contributor to Lifewire and former Managing Editor of MakeUseOf, senior IT Analyst, and an automation engineer. our editorial process Facebook Twitter LinkedIn Ryan Dube Updated January 04, 2020 Apps Best Apps Tweet Share Email Many people buy a Chromecast so they can stream movies and music. Did you know there are all sorts of free Chromecast apps for Android that let you stream many other things as well? It's true. You can send photos, saved videos and music, and even maps to your Chromecast. Turn your TV into a powerful multimedia device with all of the apps listed below. These apps should work no matter who made your Android phone: Samsung, Google, Huawei, Xiaomi, etc. 01 of 12 Google Photos If you often find yourself wanting to share photos you've taken with your phone to family or friends, skip trying to show them on your phone. Use Google Photos to share pictures with everyone in the room. When you click on a photo in the Google Photos app, you'll see the Chromecast icon in the upper right corner. Just tap it to display that photo on your TV. While Google Photos doesn't have an automated slideshow, you can swipe across the screen to change photos, and the picture displayed on the TV will change as well. What We Like Wasy to use Installed by default No ads What We Don't Like Slideshow is manual 02 of 12 Shoebox If you really want to stream an automated slideshow to your TV, then you should turn to Shoebox. When you first set up the Shoebox app, it'll sync all photos on your Android with your cloud-based Shoebox account. Open any photo in the app, and you'll see the Chromecast icon in the upper right corner. Once you start casting, Just click on the menu icon (three dots), and you can tap Start slideshow to start the photo slideshow on your TV. What We Like Limited features Only works with photos Automated slideshow What We Don't Like Only works with photos 03 of 12 Web Video Cast People capture videos on their phone all the time, and usually only view them either directly on the phone, or after transferring them to their computer. Wouldn't it be cool if you could stream those videos to your Chromecast and share them with everyone? With Web Video Cast, it's as easy as tapping the menu icon in the upper left corner of the app, and tapping on Phone files. You can browse to the video files on your phone, and cast them to your Chromecast device. What We Like Pleasant design Easy to find media files What We Don't Like Distracting ads Frequent prompts for premium purchase 04 of 12 Server Cast Server Cast is another app that lets you stream video files from your phone to your Chromecast. When you first launch Server Cast, in the main window you can either tap on Phone Media, or File Explorer. Phone Media provides shortcuts to all of the folders on your phone that hold media files recognized by the app. File Explorer lists all of the individual files. If you tap the plus icon at the lower right corner of the main window, you can add other sources for your files, like Google Drive, Dropbox, an SMB server, or even FTP servers. Once you tap on any video file, the app will display all Chromecast devices detected on your network. Just choose the Chromecast you want to cast the video to. What We Like Beautiful design Large navigation buttons Integration with cloud storage Access to FTP and SMG files What We Don't Like Ads are distracting Not intuitive to use 05 of 12 GPlayer GPlayer is one of the easiest video casting apps to use. There's no searching for audio files required, because the app searches your phone and displays all detected video files right on the main screen. If you tap the down arrow icon in the top menu, and then tap the Share icon, you can access the Group Media Sharing feature. This lets you share your media library with the mobile devices of your friends who are on the same network. This is great at family or friend gatherings, because everyone can access the same video playlist and choose which video to play next. What We Like Easy to access media files Simple design Easy to use What We Don't Like Frequent prompts for premium upgrade No cloud storage integration Complex navigation 06 of 12 Spotify When most people think of Spotify, they think about streaming music or podcasts from the vast Spotify library of media. But did you know that you can sync the Spotify mobile app with your Chromecast and stream music to your television? Setting this up is easy. Tap on Your LibraryTap on the gear icon to access SettingsScroll down and click on Connect to a device If you have an active Chromecast device on your network, you'll see it in the list of connected devices. Tap on the device to cast your Spotify music to your TV. With a premium Spotify account, you can download your favorite music locally to your phone. Stream that music to your Chromecast device even when you have no Internet connection. What We Like Integrated with regular Spotify Limited features No integration with other services What We Don't Like Local storage requires premium account 07 of 12 ES File Explorer If you want to move beyond photos and music, you can stream other media from your Android device with ES File Explorer. You'll need to install other apps that specifically cast music, video, or photos to cast that content from your phone. But ES File Explorer serves as a catch-all app that allows you to easily find all media stored on your phone. Tap any of the media files, and ES File Explorer will show you all of the apps installed on your phone that are capable of casting that content. Tap on the app and it'll stream that media to your Chromecast. ES File Explorer can even sync with your Google Drive account if that's where you store all of your music, photos, or video. What We Like Simple to learn Easy to cast files What We Don't Like Requires extra apps to cast Limited features without premium 08 of 12 Apps for Chromecast If you want to share your entire mobile screen on your TV, Apps for Chromecast is the way to go. Apps for Chromecast is advertised as a library of apps that let you supercharge your use of Chromecast. App categories include apps that let you cast movies, music, photos, games and more. But the best feature is available when you tap on the menu icon. In the menu, you can tap on Cast screen to device to display your mobile screen on your TV through your Chromecast. Once you're sharing your screen, you can share anything - games, your browser, or your social stream. What We Like Allows you to cast anything Simple to use Access to many Chromecast apps Integration with Google Drive What We Don't Like Not many Chromecast features Few integrations 09 of 12 Castify Castify is one of the most functional free Chromecast apps in that it lets you cast more types of media from right inside the app. My moving any media files on your phone into the Castify folder will let you view those files from the app. You can either cast using the Chromecast icon at the upper right corner of the screen, or tap on the media file and tap on the Chromecast icon on the pop-up screen. If you tap on the folder icon at the top of the screen, you can browse any folder on your phone and choose media files there to cast. What We Like Easy to find media files Intuitive design Build playlists What We Don't Like No cloud storage integration Limited ads 10 of 12 LocalCast Localcast is a good free Chromecast app to use on your Android if you have files scattered throughout different folders on your phone. This app lets you store photos, movies, or music inside your Localcast library, or click on the Folder icon in the menu to search for media files stored anywhere on your phone. The best feature of this app is the ability to long-press on any media file and add it to the queue. If you're having a party at home, you can load up the queue with your favorite music or movies and stream them all automatically to your Chromecast device. You can can also sync the app with your Google Drive, Google Photos, or Dropbox account. What We Like Well designed Easy to learn Many cloud storage integrations What We Don't Like Complex to locate local files Distracting ads 11 of 12 All Screen When you first load the All Screen app, don't let the vintage television at the top of the screen fool you. There's nothing vintage about this app. Gallery: Lets you browse and stream videos or photo albumsAudio: Stream your sorted music by album, artist, or playlistHistory: Browse your recently cast mediaIPTV: Stream from Internet Protocol Television (IPTV) sources on your networkMedia Server: Cast content from any media server on your networkWeb Browser: Stream from an embedded web browser You can also sync the app with your Google Photos, Google Drive, or Dropbox accounts. What We Like Easy to find local media files Simple navigation Integration with cloud storage What We Don't Like Weak design 12 of 12 Maps on Chromecast Planning a trip as a family? The Maps On Chromecast app lets you cast Google Maps to your Chromecast device. You can swipe your finger across the screen to scroll the map. Change between road, terrain, satellite, or hybrid view. Use two fingers to zoom in or out, and enable map scale to gauge distance between different locations on the map. The app is a great way to explore locations as a group that you're planning to travel to. What We Like Creative use of Chromecast Well designed Impressive graphics What We Don't Like Limited functionality No Google Maps trip planning features It's truly a waste of a Chromecast device to just use it to stream movies from apps like Netflix or YouTube. Give your Chromecast new life by downloading any of the apps above to your Android.