My Chromecast with Google TV arrived today and although I am waiting for my Google Workspaces to hit the 30 day mark so that I can use YouTube I was able to set everything else up. On the first boot up I went through the process of configuring the settings including voice control which I set to English United Kingdom (which funny enough was able to work with a New Zealand accent without an issues). After configuring and getting it hooked up to wifi (thank goodness it supports 5GHz) it downloaded a sizeable update and got that installed. I then went to the Paly store and downloaded all the applications I use on a regular basis – Bloomberg, DW, France 24 and Al Jazeera.

The first thing I noticed, after getting everything setup, is how the whole experience is not only faster/more responsive than the Tizen based operating system that Samsung uses in its televisions, it is also faster than the Apple TV 4K where I found there was constant lag between pressing my remote and the device responding. There is also the issue of the remote control – the Apple TV one is just horrible, it has been with us for 2 generations (maybe more) and it really hasn’t gotten all that much better where as the Chromecast with Google TV comes with a fairly traditional remote with clicky buttons and it works perfect.

This coming weekend I’ll do a more comprehensive review of both of them but for now I’m pretty impressed with how things are going.