Qualcomm’s streaming stick is an Android powered threat to Chromecast

The world of HDMI-based streaming is already rather hectic, and now Qualcomm, makers of the processors used in a large number of smartphones, have one of their own. It’s called the 4K Streaming Adapter, and it’s an Android device for the back of your TV.

It might not look like much from the outside, but this stick is a fully-fledged Android smartphone, just without the touchscreen or a battery. It comes packing Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 800 processor (the one found in most recent flagships), and various different connectivity methods including Wi-Fi and 4G, and a full version of Android.

Speaking to Slashgear, Qualcomm said that what you see on your TV when you plug in the stick will all depend on the requirements of the eventual manufacturers. Apparently some of them are only interested in Chromecast-style casting, where the phone is in total control. But supposedly there’s no reason why there can’t be a fully fledged Android computer on the stick with its on-screen interface and support for wireless accessories.

Regardless of how it actually ends up, the 4K Streaming Adapter is designed to bridge the gap between broadcast TV and remote content. That’s because it’s capable of broadcasting content via Wi-Fi and various different kinds of LTE. One possibility is to have content streaming via LTE Broadcast, which is more restrained in terms of bandwidth use  and allows dynamic content like adverts tailored to a user’s activity or current location.

So far the 4K Streaming Adapter is only in the prototype phase, but Qualcomm claim that it has had strong interest from a number of potential partners. Sadly it refused to disclose any names, or what plans might be in the works. Qualcomm does, however, expect the device to be competitive with similar products that are already on the market.

Featured image courtesy of Slashgear

Tom Pritchard