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Google introduces home audio streaming service

The Columbian
Published: January 5, 2015, 4:00pm

LOS ANGELES — Google unveiled Google Cast for audio Monday, a service that streams music to home audio players via smartphones. The audio service uses the same technology behind Chromecast, a small device that plugs into televisions and lets people access digital programs such as YouTube and Netflix. With Cast, people choose a home speaker with the same embedded technology and use their phone to send music to it.

The service works with only Google Cast Ready speakers, which are to launch in the U.S. in the spring from the likes of Sony, LLG and HEOS by Denon. Music can be streamed from such apps as Deezer, Google Play Music, iHeartRadio, NPR One, Pandora, Rdio and more. Spotify is notably missing from the list.

The launch of Google Cast pits Google against Apple’s AirPlay, which streams audio and other content wirelessly from Apple’s mobile devices to Apple TV and other AirPlay-enabled devices. It also will compete against the popular Sonos audio systems.