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Chromecast Audio alternative 2020: Which product best replaces the dongle?

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From Apple’s Siri to Google Home, Amazon’s Echo Dot to Microsoft’s Cortana, in 2020, virtual assistants are an everyday thing.

This advancement in AI has made its way into many people’s homes. So, whether you want to check the weather, put some music on or send a hands-free message, the possibilities are all there.

Technology is certainly making our lives easier in the 21st century and Google’s Chromecast gives even more flexibility when watching TV.

Casting whatever is on your tablet or mobile phone screen to the television is made possible for everyone. And in 2015, Google released Chromecast Audio for music lovers everywhere. But now the product is no longer available for purchase.

When the audio quality of a Bluetooth just wouldn’t do, the Chromecast Audio was a great device for listening to music. So, what are the best Chromecast Audio alternatives in 2020?

Why was Chromecast Audio discontinued?

Released alongside the second-generation Chromecast in 2015, Chromecast Audio is a dongle that plugs into a speaker. The device is used to stream music on a Wi-Fi connection. Using your phone, tablet, or laptop you can cast audio to play out of your speaker.

This offering from Google is compatible with Google Play, Netflix, Spotify, YouTube and (when it was selling) could be purchased for around £20.

However, after four years on the market, in 2019, the Chromecast Audio was discontinued. By the looks of things, Google is planning on creating other audio devices such as speakers, rather than dongles such as the Chromecast Adio in the future.

A 2019 report from Variety featured an interview with a Google spokesperson: “Our product portfolio continues to evolve, and now we have a variety of products for users to enjoy audio. We have therefore stopped manufacturing our Chromecast Audio products. We will continue to offer assistance for Chromecast Audio devices, so users can continue to enjoy their music, podcasts and more.”

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Roku streaming stick

When looking for a Chromecast Audio alternative, the most suitable option may be the Roku streaming stick.

The product’s price is similar to that of the Chromecast Audio and it provides the option to cast music.

Pick up a Roku Express online through Amazon for £20. As well as audio casting, you can watch live TV and TV on-demand. Plus setting the Roku streaming stick up is said to be very straight-forward.

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Chromecast Audio alternative 2020: Avantree Priva III

Another small device, but different from the Roku streaming stick, is the Avantree Priva III. Avantree also has a more recent release in the Avantree Audikast (£55).

With this device, you can stream TV audio to your speaker. Avantree says that the Priva III shouldn’t have any audio delay, reaches a 30m range and is easy to use.

The Avantree Priva III requires USB power. This is great news for anyone who forgets to charge their tech. Each time you use the device by plugging it into the TV’s USB port, it powers up automatically when you turn on the television.

Marantz PM7000N Streaming Amplifier

If you’re not scared of splashing the cash, the Marantz PM7000N Streaming Amplifier is a great alternative.

For anyone serious about their audio, this Streaming Amplifier comes in at a hefty £940.

Now, it’s not exactly a ‘like for like’ when it comes to the Google Chromecast Audio, but it is compatible with Amazon, Google and Apple streaming services and home virtual assistant devices.

Teufel Streamer as a Chromecast Audio replacement

Along the same lines as the Marantz, but for a more affordable price, the Teufel Streamer also provides the option to cast music.

The Teufel Streamer features Raumfeld technology which enables Wi-Fi streaming from services like Spotify, internet radio and music stored on a local network. This one comes in at £280 and can be purchased online here.

Chromecast Audio alternative 2020: Vizio Soundbar

The main aspect that people loved about the Chromecast Audio was its simplicity. The Chromecast Audio featured a 3.5mm Aux which this Vizio Soundbar also has.

If you’re looking for a home speaker, as well as a device which you can stream music to, the Vizio Soundbar may be for you.

However, an important point to note is that the Vizio soundbar operates via Bluetooth rather than Wi-Fi which isn’t favoured by many. The product description does note that “Connectivity options are available with more audio inputs.”

Chromecast Audio: Google Chromecast workaround

Alternatively, if you’re wanting to remain in the Google family of products, there may be a way to do so.

If you haven’t got a Google Chromecast already, for £25 you can purchase a third-generation Chromecast online.

Using the regular TV Chromecast alongside an HDMI to AUX adaptor you can successfully cast music. HDMI to AUX adapters are available online through Amazon.

Google also offers guides online such as how to cast Android Audio from the Google Home app.

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