Casting Our Way To Financial Independence

Abracadabra! A la peanut butter and jelly sandwiches!

No, when I'm talking about casting, I'm not talking about Mumford the Magician.

Nor and I talking about tapping 6 islands to cast Prosperity so we all can draw 5 cards.

I'm talking about Google Chromecast and it's ability to turn any TV into a SmartTV.

The Google Chromecast is a small HDMI dongle that plugs into your TV. It is connected to the Internet via wireless and can be controlled with a phone, tablet, or computer. The cost for such a device is around $39-45 dollars. We got ours on the Google Play store, but last time I saw had some bonus offers if you purchased from them.

Most recently, we used the YouTube app on wifey's Nexus 5 and iPad to cast video to the TV. In the future, with a subscription to Netflix, we could also cast video from the Netflix app to the TV.

So how does this help me attain financial independence?

Assuming you're not interested in the limited options available with over the air signals or you don't have access to the signals in your area, for starters, YouTube is free and Netflix only costs $10 a month. Compared that to the $70+ a month a typical household pays for a cable or satellite subscription.

That's $60+ dollars of savings a month. That's money that can go towards food or paying your Internet costs.

So what's so good about YouTube? Isn't that just the place people upload fuzzy 10 second videos of people hurting themselves in painful manners?

Well, maybe if this was 2005, sure! However, in 2014, more people are posting high definition content to be viewed.

Want to see what happened last night on Conan? The Team Coco channel is always updated.

What if you love food? Well, Gordon Ramsey uploads new content each week.

How about a particular song you like to listen to? Chances are, you can find that music video on YouTube as well.

There are millions of YouTube channels available to be subscribed to. Most of these channels contain high quality videos with relevant content.

If YouTube isn't your thing, using a computer, you can visit the website of your favourite channel. Most of these websites allow you to watch the latest episode of your favourite shows online for free! The only catch is you'll need to sit through ads like regular TV*.

I don't want to watch TV shows on my computer, I want to watch it on my TV!

With Google Chromecast, you can cast the tab containing the video onto the TV.

Want to watch some home renovation shows? Check out the HGTV website. Find the video you want, cast the tab, and hit the fullscreen button.

Want to see what happened on MasterChef Canada? Check out the CTV website. Find the video you want, cast the tab, and hit the fullscreen button.

Want to watch Kevin O'Leary chew out an entrepreneur on Dragon's Den? Check out the CBC website. Find the video you want, cast the tab, and hit the fullscreen button.

In addition to viewing older episodes, you can also live stream other shows if the content provider allows it. For example, we could stream CityNews or Breakfast Television from CityTV on our computer and cast it to the TV with Chromecast. We wouldn't need to considering we get that channel for free over the air.

It's as simple as that!

The bottom line is that there are many options out there. You don't need to be confined to a specific lineup on a specific day. What if you want to watch a cooking show, but aren't interested in the desserts they are making on the Food Network? How about tuning in to watch your favourite show, only to find it's a rerun?

With a Google Chromecast, you can watch anything available anytime you want.

You're obviously not going to find last night's episode of your favourite shows (unless some unscrupulous uploader violates the user terms of YouTube), but you'll get the next best thing. Content on demand at a reduced cost.

Of course with all these shows available, you might find yourself with other problems.

Like wifey wanting to buy a different cooking pot after seeing Gordon Ramsey use his.

Oh boy! I guess the money we saved is going towards a new pot.

*There are ways around this. Thanks to the Google Chrome extension called Adblock Plus. It blocks most ads that are displayed on the Chrome web browser. Not just static banner ads, but also the video ads that play during such videos. The best part is that this extension is free! I love commercial free viewing.


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