Google Chromecast Setup: How to Start Watching Fast

Everything you need to know to get started using the inexpensive dongle

What to Know

  • Make sure your TV has an HDMI port and you have a wireless network.
  • Plug your Chromecast into your TV, follow the onscreen instructions and download the setup app.
  • Open app > select media > tap Cast button from any mobile device. Select Chromecast device.

This article explains how to set up Google Chromecast so you can quickly start watching TV or movies from your phone or other mobile devices.

How to Set Up Chromecast

Chromecast plugs into the HDMI port of your TV. The device includes a bit of extra cord in case your HDMI ports are inconveniently located, but you must have an HDMI port on your TV for the device to work at all and, of course, access to power. In some cases, you may be able to plug the Chromecast into the USB port of your TV in order to power it. 

Chromecast requires a wireless network. If you want to use the Netflix, YouTube, HBO, Google Play, or other streaming service features, you need to have accounts set up for those as well.

Use Android or iOS phones and tablets—as well as computers and laptops—to control Chromecast. 

Once you have plugged your Chromecast into your TV, follow the onscreen instructions and download the setup app. This process is easiest to accomplish from a laptop, but it is possible to set up your Chromecast from an Android tablet or phone, too.

You must install a player for each device you want to use with your Chromecast, but you don't have to individually configure it. If you are connected to the same Wi-Fi network as a Chromecast, you can control that Chromecast.  

How to Use Chromecast as a Video Player

Chromecast can be used for playing Netflix, Hulu, YouTube or any app that is compatible with Chromecast.

  1. Open the app. 

  2. Select a movie.

  3. Tap the Cast button from any mobile device (smartphone, tablet, laptop).

  4. Select the Chromecast device.

  5. Use the mobile device as a remote to play, pause, and otherwise direct the movie.

The video playback on the Chromecast is smooth and on par with the other types of hardware such as Xbox, Playstation 3, Roku, and smart TVs

Playing videos from a Chromebook or Mac laptop may not be as smooth, however, because you are screencasting the videos instead of just sending them to the device as you did with your mobile device.

Was this page helpful?