Chromecast’s secret weapon to take over your TV: HDMI-CEC

Gigaom

Chromecast, Google’s (s GOOG) new TV dongle that is meant to beam online videos straight from your laptop or mobile device to your TV, comes with a nifty feature that was only mentioned briefly during Wednesday’s announcement: Users will be able to turn on their TV, switch inputs and automatically start playback just by pressing a single button on their mobile device. The technology that makes this possible is called HDMI-CEC.

HDMI-CEC is an extension of the HDMI display port interface that makes it possible to send control commands back and forth over an HDMI cable. The idea behind HDMI-CEC is to simplify the use of multiple devices connected to each other via HDMI. It can, for example, be used to control a DVD or Blu-ray player with your TV’s remote control, or even change the volume of your home theater receiver with that same remote.

HDMI-CEC was first…

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