A new version of VLC adds Chromecast support in beta form
Image/Photo Credit: VLC
A new major version of the open source media player VLC has added several features that users have been requesting, including the very useful Chromecast support.
Version 3.0 of VLC is the latest effort by people behind the popular open source media player to make VLC the default go-to media player for all occasions.
VLC, original known as the VideoLAN Client, has always been popular because it offered codec less playback, meaning you don't need to have video and audio codecs already installed on your system to play almost all types of media files. Originally for PCs, VLC is now available on Chrome OS, Android/Android TV, iOS, Apple TV, as well as on Mac and Linux platforms.
Behind the scenes, version 3.0 ties together the source code for all versions so they're all based on the same code base, making future upgrades easier for the developers.
But for the average user, it will be the addition of Chromecast support that's the most exciting. Currently still in beta form, and limited to support on Android/Chromebook devices, the magic of VLC's Chromecast implementation is that it allows local media files even in formats not supported by the Chromecast to be streamed and played. This involves converting the video file in real time, which means that for certain video files, VLC's Chromecast implementation will be CPU and battery intensive.
Other headlining additions includes additional hardware decoding support which opens up the possibility to play 4K and even 8K content. It also adds HDR support, 360 degree video with 3D audio support, and prepares for supporting the new AV1 format, which has received some major backers recently.