thanks for the Za_Raczke on Twitter, We now have a solid idea of what we should expect in the rather bizarre Chromecast HD that we expect to see soon. While we’re not sure Google will include this device in the keyword for its upcoming hardware event on October 6th, I bet we’ll see it in the hands-on area and in the Google Store shortly after the proceedings are over.
If you take the time to read the thread above, you’ll see a few things that have been confirmed like naming “Chromecast HD” (referring to a 1080p device for sure) and downgrading the original Chromecast with Google TV from 2GB of RAM to 1.5 GB this time. Additionally, the processor is a less efficient Amlogic S805X2 chip versus the original S905X3. While the new chip comes with AV1 decoding (which the original Chromecast w/ Google TV lacks), the overall power of this chip is simply less powerful.
For a device looking to enter the market at a much lower price while producing only 1080p, these compromises make sense, I suppose. I still agree with Gabriel saying that A new, high-end Chromecast should be launched with this device In order to make any sense at this point in 2022, but If a Chromecast is so cheap, I totally understand the cuts.
One very strange upgrade
While these specs may be a bit muddled, Google is at least adding a feature to this device that can undo some of the original storage issues found in the first model. While you might think that something as simple as increasing the storage size a bit would be the most obvious solution, here, it looks like Google instead is working on this simple software problem instead. It’s an interesting move, but one that should work.
As you can see, the new Chromecast HD (or whatever it will be called) will ship with Android/Google TV 12, making it the first to do so. With this upgrade comes the OS’s ability to refresh in the background in a seamless A/B manner. This means that the update can be downloaded and installed in a compressed form, does not take up user-facing storage and instead works on read-only storage partitions.
The paltry 8GB storage on the original Chromecast with Google TV means we probably won’t see it upgraded beyond Android/Google TV 10 due to not being able to handle those big OS updates across partitions without some sort of hardware upgrade.
So, at launch, the Chromecast HD will have a pretty big casing effect on the current model, and it all sounds a little weird. We still don’t have a solid understanding of what Google’s driving this device is and why it would ever exist without a much better “premium” option for consumers to choose. 1080p was fine a few years ago, but more and more people are switching to 4K TVs, which means this model was already behind the curve before it came out. An updated 4K model to go along with it would make more sense, but there’s absolutely no indication of that at the moment. I think we’ll see what happens in October.