Google is about to make it even easier to cast a tab from Chrome to a TV.
Native, add-on free Chromecast support is being trialled in the latest beta builds of the web browser.
The feature means you will be finally be able to mirror tabs, cast content or stream selected media straight to the nearest big screen TV — but without needing to install the official Chromecast extension first.
Enable Extension-Free Casting in Chrome
At present you need to download and install the official Google Cast extension for Chrome to cast tab contents from the web to your TV.
As of the latest release of Google Chrome Beta for Windows, Mac & Linux (as well as Chrome OS) this is no longer necessary.
You need only right-click an empty area on the page you want to cast and select the “Cast…” option from the context menu, or you can click the button added to the Chrome Toolbar.
As this nifty native feature is currently in testing it is not enabled by default. To try extension-free casting in Google Chrome for yourself you need to a) use a beta, dev or canary build of the browser¹ and b) manually enable the experimental “Media Router” flag from the Chrome Flags page.
The latter of these is easy enough:
- Paste the following address into the URL/address bar and hit return/enter:
- Select ‘Enabled’ in the drop-down menu
- Relaunch the browser when prompted
The Google Cast extension (assuming you have it installed) will be disabled and the new media router version will add a ‘Cast’ icon to the Chrome toolbar.
Use this button, or the new “Cast…” menu item listed in the right-click context menu, to beam browser contents to a Cast-equipped device.
This Feature Is Sure to Land in Stable Soon
Although native chained to the beta (and dev +canary) channel for now, the feature is highly likely to land in the stable build just as soon as it’s undergone enough testing and tweaking.
With Google Cast adoption spreading readily, you’ll be able to fling content to Chromecast, Chromecast Audio, Android TV and new Cast Ready speakers from some of the world’s biggest audio brands.