Google has not only sold out of Netflix giveaways to bundle with its Chromecast device, but it doesn’t have any Chromecasts to sell right now, period. If you place an order on Google’s site, you’ll be told there is a two- to three-week wait before one will ship.
As a helpful AllThingsD reader points out, as of this morning, you could still buy a Chromecast from Best Buy’s website. That’s no longer the case, either.
But if you do end up looking for a Chromecast on BestBuy.com, you will find a list of other ways you can watch Web video on your TV.
The list is provided by Google, via its AdSense ad units, which means that, even if Google can’t sell you a gadget, it might still make money by getting you to click on a link.
The list will change over time, and will vary depending on your browsing history. Here’s one I just saw:
If you’re in the market for a Chromecast, you might very well have heard of Roku, which offers gadgets that do similar things, but at a higher price point.
It’s interesting to note that Google’s auction/algorithm thinks you might also want to check out devices from Western Digital, which has had a hard time getting attention for its streaming boxes. It’s also interesting to see that Aereo, a subscription service that can’t show up on your TV without help from Apple TV, Roku (or, theoretically, Chromecast), is on the list, too.
In what is a solid example of the best sort of problem to have, Google’s just-announced Chromecast video streaming dongle is already proving too damned popular for its own good.
At yesterday’s debut, Google announced that buyers of the $35 device would also be getting three free months of Netflix service with their purchase. Just 24 hours later, that deal is off. Sad trombone.
Why? “Overwhelming demand”, says the Googles. Someone had to pay for that service in the end, after all – so if Google can’t even keep these things on the shelves, they can probably get away with nippin’ out the Netflix perks.
With that said, those three free months might have been a non-trivial part of why the device was getting snatched up so quick. A streaming-only Netflix plan costs $8 per month ($24 for three months) and Google’s Netflix deal applied even if you were already a Netflix subscriber. For current Netflix customers (or for anyone who would be down to sign up for 3 months of free service) it brought the effective cost of the (already crazy cheap) Chromecast down to eleven dollars. At that point, there’s not even a decision to make.
If you snatched up a Chromecast before Google killed the deal: don’t worry. The LA Times got confirmation that Google will honor the promotion for all the early buyers, though it’s not entirely clear where they plan to draw the line.
Update: Amazon updated their product page to say they’ll honor the deal for anyone who ordered before 5:31 p.m. yesterday. Sucks for you, 5:32 ers!
[Disclosure: Google loaned me a Chromecast for the week so I can tinker with it. It’s going back (read: I’m not keeping it), but I’d rather disclose too much than disclose too little. Review should be up this weekend.]