To celebrate the first birthday of its Chromecast television dongle, Google is offering U.S. customers a free 90-day subscription to its Google Play All Access music streaming service.
The gift for Chromecast owners was announced by Mario Queiroz of the Chromecast team in a July 24 post on the Google Chrome Blog for device owners who sign up for the free 90-day All Access subscription by Sept. 30. The free limited-time subscription is only available to Chromecast owners who are not yet All Access subscribers.
"We built Chromecast to make it easier for people to enjoy their favorite entertainment from their phone, tablet or laptop on the largest screen in the house—the TV," wrote Queiroz. "If you already have a Chromecast, go to chromecast.com/offers to redeem this offer. Visit the Help Center to learn more."
Chromecast, which first went on sale in the United States in July 2013, is a $35 phone- and tablet-controlled dongle that lets users plug Google into their television-viewing experiences. Chromecast plugs into the High Definition Multimedia Interface (HDMI) slot on an HDTV, enabling users to direct video content to the TV via a smartphone, tablet or PC, whether it's running an operating system from Google, Apple or Microsoft. Plus, while the phone is busy "casting," it can still be used for other things, like emailing.
Chromecast works with a continuously expanding assortment of services, including Netflix, YouTube, Google Play Movies & TV, and Google Play Music. Content is broadcast from the cloud to the TV—a user's smartphone or tablet essentially becomes the remote control making this happen.
The All Access streaming music service was unveiled at Google I/O in May 2013 as the first-ever Google Play music subscription service that allows users to access all the music in Google's collection on the fly and add it to their personal collections. All Access also allows users to bring their personal digital music collections together with a Google service that will make additional recommendations based on their existing collections. All Access is priced at $9.99 per month and works on smartphones and tablets and through Web browsers.
A list of all apps that work with Chromecast can be found at chromecast.com/apps.