There are reports that Google is preparing a new video streaming stick that slots into the Chromecast family.
According to documentation viewed by 9to5Google, the software giant has an Android device in the works codenamed Boreal (9to5Google’s APK Insight team were able to confirm the codename elsewhere). Apparently the Boreal device is connected to the same software that relates to Chromecast with Google TV, and the Boreal codename has ‘family’ links to Sabrina, which was the codename for the previous Chromecast stick.
It would seem that it’s too early to figure out any specs for the device, though some are speculating that it could have improved storage. The previous streamer only had 8GB at launch, half of which was taken up by the Google OS, and an update in 2021 optimise the memory space so the thinking is the new streamer may have more space available for downloads.
Another assumption is that Boreal will support the new royalty free AV1 hardware decoder that’s become a requirement for all Android devices going forward, a feature that will affect Android TV OS as well.
It would seem it’s too early for Google to be releasing a replacement for the Chromecast with Google TV as it’s just a little more than a year old, so the thought is the Boreal will slot in alongside the existing the streamer as another way into the Google TV ecosystem. Our own assumption is that if that were the case, the older stick would be priced more affordably to mix it up with the cheaper Roku or Amazon sticks. Or, perhaps the Boreal is a more expensive streamer ala the Apple TV 4K box, in which case it could have premium specs and perhaps a different design.
We can only speculate at the moment, but 9to5Google did have one more titbit – that “Google currently intends for the company’s second Google TV powered device to launch this year”.