Australian telco giant to join up with Google?

Google has already become a way of life for many and a new development in the telco sector indicates its influence over Australians could deepen even further.

According to a February 10 article by the Australian, telstra has entered into secret talks with the US search engine to bring a digital media player into the country.

Google Chromecast dongles are already available in the US and are 5 cm long devices that can be plugged into your TV, allowing you to watch high-definition video and content from the web on a bigger screen.

You simply plug it into the HDTV and connect it to your home's WiFi and then you can send videos and other data to your TV from your smart phone, tablet or laptop.

The advent of this device in Australia could revolutionise the Australian telco sector, bringing more customers and revenue to its other content businesses such as Bigpond Movies.

According to the Australian, engineers are working out if they can embed the functionality of the Google device into the T-Box, its own digital media player.

In the US the Google Chromecast dongle comes preloaded with video streaming applications like YouTube and Netflix.

Many Americans are choosing to purchase the device owing to its cheap price point and because it is an easy-to-use device. Plus, being able to stream content from online forums such as Netflix allows viewers to watch what they want when and where they want it.

Another advantage is that you don't need a remote for this tool, as the app itself performs that function. This means there is no need to hunt down the back of the couch when you want to watch your favourite programme.

The Chromecast could increase numbers during the AFL and NRL seasons as during this time last year telstra attracted more than 800,000 app downloads.

Chromecast may also be able to include an app for Foxtel and the Fox Sports franchise, which is pay-TV's biggest subscription driver.

If the American market is anything to go by, Google Chromecast may be a huge hit. As of January 2014, according to the Australian, this device was one of the top selling items on Amazon and had been for 16 weeks consecutively.

It is priced at US$35 and the Australian predict a similar price point when it hits the shores Down Under.

With many people now electing to watch their favourite shows online rather than on the traditional TV screen, this device may be just what Australia needs.

Posted by Richard West.