We learned yesterday that Google killed a third-party streaming app for Chromecast called AllCast. Koushik Dutta built the app so that he could stream local content to his TV through Chromecast instead of having to rely on official apps like Netflix or YouTube. He expressed concern that Google would block indie developers from working on Chromecast, but Google says that’s not happening.
In response to the killing of AllCast, Google told TechCrunch that it’s all a matter of building a better experience for end users before giving indie developers free reign:
We’re excited to bring more content to Chromecast and would like to support all types of apps, including those for local content. It’s still early days for the Google Cast SDK, which we just released in developer preview for early development and testing only. We expect that the SDK will continue to change before we launch out of developer preview, and want to provide a great experience for users and developers before making the SDK and additional apps more broadly available.
In other words, Google feels that its Google Cast SDK is in too early a form for the kind of tinkering being done by Dutta and other developers. Much like with Google Glass and facial recognition apps, Google wants to make sure that the appropriate technologies and policies are in place before it opens development to all.
In a way, I can see Google’s concern here. Dutta didn’t have access to the official Google Cast SDK so he reverse engineered the Chromecast to build AllCast. Google would want to shut that down to prevent malicious apps from making their way onto its new gadget.
Of course, restricting the Google Cast SDK to a select number of participants is a double edged sword as it forces developers to crack hardware. We’re already seeing it on Google Glass, and people will continue to do so on Chromecast. Until Google releases the official Google Cast SDK to all, expect to hear more stories like this one.[Image: Google]