Skip to main content

Mozilla is not secretly working on a Chromecast of its own, but someone else is

mozilla secretly working chromecast dongle
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Last week GigaOM published a report suggesting that the makers of Firefox were busy putting together a media-streaming stick of their own to beam content from the Web straight to a large screen television set or monitor, much like Google’s Chromecast. But it now appears that Mozilla is, in fact, not working on their own dongle – the company’s open-source Firefox OS is available to any company that wants to integrate the software into their project.

Just because someone is out there integrating the OS into their dongle doesn’t mean that Mozilla is directly involved.

In an interview with Re/code earlier this week, a representative from the company explained that the recently revealed media-streaming stick “is not a Mozilla project, and we do not make devices. Firefox OS is an open platform freely available for any company to build on without restrictions.” This means companies can experiment with different form factors that run Firefox OS.

The flurry of rumors was initially spurred on by a tweet from Mozilla developer/evangelist Christian Heilmann that included a picture of what he called a “a fully open TV casting prototype device running #FirefoxOS” with an “open boot loader and all.” GigaOm’s Janko Roettgers initially reported that the device hadn’t yet been given a name or a release date, and that it wasn’t clear who Mozilla was working with as a hardware partner – other than the fact that Mozilla actually isn’t working with a hardware partner at all, the rest of this information is still yet to be released.

So what do we know? The dongle will be powered by Firefox OS, the lightweight Web-based software that Mozilla is pushing as an alternative mobile operating system. According to GigaOm, the device works in a manner similar to the Chromecast and can even run some Chromecast apps. It fits in with the screen-casting and multi-display technologies that Firefox developers have been working on for some time.

For now, all we can do is speculate as to what entity is actually developing this dongle.

Would you welcome a Chromecast competitor? Or is there no need for a proliferation of HDMI streaming dongles? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.

Update by Alex Tretbar 6-26-2014: This post was rewritten to reflect that Mozilla is not working on its own dongle.

Alex Tretbar
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Alex Tretbar, audio/video intern, is a writer, editor, musician, gamer and sci-fi nerd raised on EverQuest and Magic: The…
Chromecast deals: The cheapest option for Google’s streaming device
A Chromecast hanging from the back of a TV.

If you don't have a smart TV but want to easily stream content, or you love the Google operating system and want to use it instead of the built-in Fire or Tizen system, you need to grab a Chromecast. It's the Google streaming device that turns any TV into a smart TV. Google ended support for the first generation Google Chromecast recently, but the newer models still work as designed. If you've been loving the Chromecast since it first came out in 2013, there's no reason to switch over to a Fire TV Stick or an Apple TV 4K. There is a Chromecast deal on a newer model going on right now. The only deal currently available on a new Chromecast is $12 off the 3rd Gen version. Read about it below.
Google Chromecast 3rd gen -- $38, was $50

 

Read more
Google ends support for the original Chromecast
Google's first-gen Chromecast dongle.

Ten years is not a bad run in the world of smart devices. That's how long it's been since Google released the very first Chromecast, a tiny $35 HDMI dongle that let you wirelessly stream audio and video to your TV, with your phone serving as the remote. We liked it so much when it debuted, we named it the best product of 2013.

Unfortunately, all good things must pass, and 9to5Google recently noticed that Google quietly ended support for the original Chromecast on April 27, 2023, which means it will no longer get any feature or security updates.

Read more
Common Google Chromecast issues and how to fix them
Chromecast with Google TV plus remote.

Whether you're accessing all your favorite TV and movie content from one of the many streaming devices out there, or through a TV with an operating system built right in, like a Roku TV or a Google TV, one of the best and least expensive devices around is still the Google Chromecast.

While older Chromecast models are still available, Google's latest, the Chromecast with Google TV, still holds tried and true. It's available in HD and 4K flavors (at $30 and $50, respectively), comes with a physical remote, and a customized home page based on your viewing history — putting it on par with similar Roku and Apple TV competitor devices.

Read more