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Google may be working on a new Chromecast Ultra with an external remote

Google’s Chromecast Ultra, the popular streaming device that separated itself from the rest of the pack by forgoing a remote in lieu of your own connected device, is reportedly making a comeback. And it’s adding a remote.

According to a report by 9to5Google, a second-generation Chromecast Ultra featuring Android TV is in the works at Google, and it may be released later this year. The device will reportedly continue to have a dongle-like design but will add the first external remote in the history of the Chromecast lineup.

The 9to5Google report says the news came from “a reliable source familiar with the company’s plans.” Google has not officially confirmed any news relating to a new Chromecast device. However, Protocol’s Janko Roettgers spotted a Federal Communications Commission filing for a Google remote for an unknown device. While this isn’t verified confirmation, it’s a promising sign that Google is developing its next streaming device.

Hmmmm… a Google Remote for an unknown device just passed through the FCC…

— Janko Roettgers (@jank0) March 10, 2020

According to 9to5Google, the second-generation Ultra will support 4K HDR content, which is essentially expected of streaming devices these days. The report claims the remote will have a microphone and a dedicated Google Assistant button, and will be able to control your TV as well.

The report’s source also said the new Chromecast Ultra will be similar in design to the third-generation Chromecast that was released in 2018, with a rounder finish, a standard “G” logo and an HDMI connector resembling the current Chromecast Ultra.

Since this is an unconfirmed report on an unannounced product, there isn’t any available information regarding pricing or release date. Google could have launched it at Google I/O 2020, but the May 12 to 14 event was scrapped as concerns over the coronavirus continue to grow. With Google joining the ranks of tech companies scrambling as a result of cancellations, we’ll have to wait and see when Google decides to launch its newer devices, and if a new Chromecast Ultra may be among them.

The original Chromecast Ultra competed in a streaming market that included standouts like the Roku Ultra, Amazon Fire TV and Nvidia Shield. The Chromecast platform’s casting ability — allowing you to send almost everything you’re watching on your phone, tablet or computer to your TV — was a unique quality among the rest of the competition, and the cheaper Chromecast has been our pick for best casting streaming device.

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