Not all streaming services were created equal, and while Quickflix, Netflix, Stan and Presto TV all offer fantastic content from their extensive libraries of films and TV shows, the only way to guarantee you’ll be able to watch it all is by getting hold of a Google Chromecast.
With Netflix not due to reach Australia until next month, many viewers will be taking advantage of the introductory trial offers touted by Quickflix and Stan before making a final decision.
Unfortunately, variation in standards means that trying out the services on the big screen in your lounge has required a baffling array of hardware.
Because while all of the services (Netflix included) offer access through a web browser, and a variety of apps for both iOS and android, other inconsistencies have meant that viewing content on anything larger than a PC monitor has become a chore.
Stan and Netflix, for instance, will work with Apple TV. Quickflix and Presto will not. Smart TVs, such as the Sony Bravia series, will work with Quickflix and Netflix, but not Stan or Presto. Owners of games consoles including the PS3 and Xbox 360 will rejoice at being able to watch Netflix and Quickflix, but be despondent at the lack of support for Presto and Stan.
And while all four providers are constantly striving to add greater device compatibility to their services, right now, Chromecast is the only guaranteed method of accessing everything that Presto, Stan, Quickflix, and Netflix have to offer.
All you need to get started is a spare HDMI port on your TV set (if you have SCART only, then you’re out of luck), the $49 chromecast dongle itself, and an internet enabled companion device such as a mobile phone, tablet or PC.
Getting started with the Chromecast is easy, and after initial setup, you can use your companion device to find what you want to watch, and then direct the site to stream direct to the Chromecast which is plugged into your TV.
We’ve said before that TV shows and movies are made to be watched on a big screen, and right now, Chromecast is the only way to go.
You can read our full breakdown of the Google Chromecast.