How to Set Up a Chromecast

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If you’ve got an old HDTV without built-in Netflix streaming, all hope is not lost for you and your treasured subscription. For as little as $29, you can grab yourself a Google Chromecast. Unlike a Roku or Amazon FireTV device, the Chromecast has no onboard applications. Instead, a connection is established between your Chromecast and preferred mobile device (phone or tablet) that allows you to “cast” various apps from your phone to your non-smart TV. The latest Chromecast with Google TV brings an onscreen menu and remote control, although the setup is quite similar to the standard Chromecast.

If you’ve just bought a new Chromecast and aren’t sure how to get it up and running, don’t worry. You’re not the only one feeling a little confused. We’ve provided an easy step-by-step guide for setting up your Chromecast.

  • Step 1: Unbox your Chromecast and make sure the Chromecast, the Micro USB to USB power cable, and wall adapter are inside. 
Chromecast 3rd Gen
Dan Baker/Digital Trends
  • Step 2: Connect the Micro USB cable to your Chromecast, and then plug the broad end of your Chromecast into an open HDMI port on your TV.
Google Chromecast Ultra
  • Step 3:  You’ll need to plug in the USB cable in order to power the Chromecast. If your TV has a USB power port, plug it in there. If the port works, you should see a little LED on your Chromecast light up. If it doesn’t light up, remove the USB from the port, plug it into the USB wall charger, and plug the charger into the nearest wall outlet. If needed, you can purchase an HDMI extender cable to extend the reach of your Chromecast to your nearest outlet.
  • Step 4: Turn on your TV, and switch to the corresponding HDMI source. You’ll know you’re on the right input once you see the Set me up screen. 
Google Chromecast setup screen
  • Step 5: You can set up your Chromecast with your laptop by visiting chromecast.com/setup, or you can set it up with your tablet or smartphone by downloading the Google Home application.
Google Home Welcome screen
  • Step 6: Once you’ve downloaded the app and accepted the terms of service in the Google Home app, tap Devices on the top right corner of the screen.
  • Step 7: After you’ve allowed the app to access your location, Google Home will find the Chromecast nearest to you. After you choose your Chromecast, tap Set Up and then Continue.
How to set up your Chromecast
Google Help
  • Step 8: After the app establishes a connection to the Chromecast, tap Continue.
  • Step 9: A code should then pop up on your phone and your TV. If they match, tap I See the Code.
How to set up your Chromecast
Google Help
  • Step 10: Choose a name for your Chromecast (hopefully something fun and clever), and then tap Continue.
how to set up a chromecast
  • Step 11: Once you’ve named it, set up your Chromecast to connect to your Wi-Fi by entering your password in the provided space.
How to set up your Chromecast
Google Help

Once your Chromecast connects to Wi-Fi, you’re all set up. If the device couldn’t connect, you might want to ensure your computer or mobile devices are compatible with your Chromecast. If you’re still running into trouble, visit the Chromecast Help Forum. Some phones, computers, and routers might need special instructions, depending on how old or new your software is. To personalize your Chromecast, you might want to consider signing in to your Google account on the device, but make sure you turn off email notifications unless you’re looking to get frequent news and updates on how to best use your device. You’ll also be treated to a “How to Cast” video, which you can watch below.

Also, be sure to check out our Chromecast tips and tricks article to get the most from your new streaming companion.

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