An important thing missing from the photos of the new device.
Tricky marketing isn’t the sole preserve of Microsoft – Google is doing similar things with their new Chromecast device.
Check out the official Chromecast page which has plenty of photos of the little dongle including one plugged in the side of a TV.
or this from the official Google presentation …
Notice anything missing?
There’s no power cable showing! Naturally, Chromecast needs power to work and the HDMI socket in the TV doesn’t supply power.
Chromecast needs another cable to work. You’ll only know that if you look waaay down in the footnotes printed in 10pt light grey Power cord required (not shown).
… that’s “Power cord required (not shown)”.
A USB power cable is necessary so you’ll need a USB socket or AC-USB adapter within cable reach.
Also, it seems some web streaming services can ask to be excluded from Chromecast use.
All that said, Chromecast looks interesting and certainly is keenly priced.
Wireless streaming to a TV is nifty but you can get the same or better quality with more flexibility using a laptop and a HDMI cable. Flat HDMI cables are fairly cheap and can discreetly run between the sofa and TV.
Update: Chromecast can run without the USB power cable but only for very new HDMI sockets which supply power. More recent ‘hands on’ reviews are less positive than the initial articles. Chromecast is fairly limited in the streaming services it will work with and doesn’t handle local sourced videos (i.e. videos on your local network) as well as you’d expect.