Google goes after Apple’s AirPlay with Cast for Audio

google-cast speaker-techinvo

Electric cars have been the buzzword for a few years bu now a couple of former HTC executives want to transform how most of the emerging countries commute with their electric scooter. However, there is a catch, their Gogoro Smartsc ooter doesn’t need to be plugged in to charge its battery. In fact, it can’t be plugged in.

In stealth mode since its foundation in 2011, Gogoro has unveiled its vision and first electric scooter at CES 2015. But unlike most electric cars, where one had to initially compromise on speed, form and functionality, the Gogoro Smartscooter comeswith all the bells and whistles. With a top speed of 95kmph, it can go from 0 to 50kmph in 4.2 seconds.
But instead of plugging in the scooter at the end of the day to charge its battery, Gogoro is betting on batteries that riders would swap at GoStations. The company would set up a Gogoro Energy Network in cities where it launches. The Smartscooter is powered by two batteries that will provide it a range of 100km.

The Panasonic manufactured batteries are housed under the seat and are easily swappable thanks to the green handle on the top. The battery also identifies the user and also stores diagnostics information about the scooter. The batteries come with 25 sensors, NFC connectivity and 256-bit security encryption.

Google has already been vastly successful with its cheap $35 Chromecast media streamer but it now has its eyes set on taking a bite out of Apple’s AirPlay pie. The Mountain View-based Internet giant today announced Cast for Audio, which would enable users to play audio from their devices directly to compatible speakers by touching a button.

Google Cast for Audio will work across devices including Android and iOS smartphones and tablets or the Internet via Chrome browser. The system works similarly to Chromecast where users will have to press/click on the cast button to stream audio content via apps on to compatible speakers.

One big difference between AirPlay and Cast for Audio is that Google’s solution won’t transfer audio from the device to the speaker. Instead it will stream audio directly from the cloud to the speaker, ensuring there is no loss in quality.

Google is working with speaker manufacturers to come up with Google Cast Ready speakers. The first partners include Sony, LG and Heos by Denon. Google says it will have more hardware brands joining later this year and has already roped in chip makers Broadcom, Marvell, MediaTek and system integrator Libre Wireless.

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