Google is working on a new gadget similar to the Chromecast in the Google TV family.
Google debuted the Chromecast with Google TV as a showcase for its new big-screen experience in fall 2020, but many have discovered that this latest Chromecast has problems specs-wise — especially storage.
According to the documents seen by 9to5Google, Google is currently developing an Android-powered device with the code name Boreal. We were also able to confirm the Boreal codename based on other evidence. Boreal appears to be directly linked to the same Android software for Google TV that powers the Chromecast with Google TV, according to what we’ve discovered. The codename Boreal was coined in the same family as Sabrina, which refers to today’s Chromecast with Google TV.
Unfortunately, Boreal’s specifications and other hints are presently unavailable, leaving us in the dark about the device’s hardware. Though there is a good chance that hardware decoding for the AV1 format will arrive, which was missing from Google Chromecast with Google TV devices, Android TV now reportedly demands.
When it comes to timing, we’ve been told that Google plans to release its second Google TV-powered device this year.
So, where does Boreal fit in with Google’s Made by Google line? For one thing, because the Chromecast with Google TV is still only a year old, we don’t think Google would be releasing a formal replacement so soon. Furthermore, if Google wanted to simply re-release 2020’s Chromecast with more storage, it wouldn’t need a new device with a different codename.
The simplicity of the Chromecast’s dongle form factor is part of its appeal, but a higher-end device to compete with the Nvidia Shield TV series has been desired. In that regard, Boreal might be a more high-end Google TV box. The $69 Chromecast Ultra and $99 Nexus Player have both utilized this approach in the past from Google.