Dell Cast May Come To All Android Devices

Looking for a way to get your tablet or smartphone's screen on an HDTV without the wire? Dell may have what you're looking for with the release of the Dell Cast. The device costs $79.99 and allows customers to sling more than just multimedia to a big screen.

Unfortunately, Dell doesn't provide a list of specifications. However, the Dell Cast includes an HDMI connector on one end, a USB port on the other end, and a microUSB port on the side for power. There's also one major catch: it only works on Dell's Venue Android-based tablets... for now.

"With the Dell Cast user interface you transform your Android tablet into your PC," the product description said. "Check email or work on documents. Stay organized with handy tiles and multiple browser windows."

Like Google's Chromecast, users simply plug the device into an HDMI port and connect the power adapter. Unlike the Chromecast, Dell Cast users are required to open a dedicated application on their Venue tablet. This allows the device to extend its Android-based "desktop" to the bigger screen.

Want to sling multimedia like movies, TV shows and photos? Merely plug Dell Cast into the HDMI port, load up the app, and choose to mirror the home screen. The company indicates that Dell Cast supports 1080p video.

Dell plans to provide existing Venue 7/8 customers with the app in an over-the-air update starting Tuesday, and Venue Pro owners will receive the app on the 30th. The app will eventually land on the company's line of Windows tablets and will possibly be made available to tablets from other manufacturers.

For Dell Venue customers, this may be an interesting accessory. For consumers without a Venue tablet, Google's Chromecast should be a sure bet if all you plan to do is fling multimedia to the screen. A list of compatible Chromecast apps can be found here, including Netflix, YouTube, Pandora, HBO Go, Hulu Plus, Chrome and loads more. Chromecast also costs a mere $35.

Follow Kevin Parrish @exfileme. Follow us @tomshardware, on Facebook and on Google+.