Monthly Archives: July 2013

How to return Google Chromecast to Google Play

Return Google Chromecast

With the launch of Google Chromecast I was asked how do you return it back to Google Play if that is where you bought it? Here are the steps you need to know.  Remember do not throw anything away until you are sure you will be keeping the Chromecast device.  From there it is about contacting Google for shipping instructions.

**This is only to return Chromecast to Google Play.  Best Buy and others will have their own return policies.

  • Keep the original packaging when you get the Google Chromecast device
  • You only have 15 days from the time Google shows it was delivered to you to initiate the return procedure
  • Contact Google and get a RMA (return Merchandise Authorization). Without it do not send back the Chromecast device, you just wasted time and shipping
  • Any accessories must be included (read this as the Chromecast and power adapter)
  • Put the RMA form from your email inside the package and use their label on the outside of the box. It has the required tracking info.  Do not try to make your own
  • You will get a refund into your Google Wallet account the costs minus shipping and handling fees
  • There could be a restocking fee as well, they aren’t clear on this part
  • It is only $35 so shipping insurance is up to you.  But until they say received it is considered your problem

So why would someone return or keep the Google Chromecast device? That will be in the review coming shortly.

Chromecast device sale scams surface

Chromecast from Google launched this week with a short amount of supply available. Even Google Play ran out of stock.  However, sellers are appearing on Amazon at 2-3 times the regular price.

Google Chromecast on Amazon

From the image (click to enlarge) you can see pricing on Amazon upwards of $119 plus shipping and new sellers popping up trying to get a piece of the early action.  Sellers are not showing any delay in shipping of the Chromecast, yet even Google is saying weeks to get it in your hands.  Bust Buy does not have it on the shelves.

The Google Chromecast offers some ease of streaming as we discussed on Yet Another Tech Show last night, but many die hard geeks with Apple TV and Roku that were on the show did not see the value.  I found one immediate value in the Google Chromecast. Too many times I find myself wanting to watch a show from Hulu that is only available via the web and not in their application ability via Roku, XBox or Apple TV.

The Chromecast device would allow me to bring that show up in Google Chrome and stream to the Chromecast device with ease. This solves one major problem with codecs, sizing and more of videos on your network.  If it can be played on a device it will just work.

But back to the Amazon problem of sellers charging far more than suggested retail.  I do not believe that they should be allowed to do so, even in a free an open market scenario.  Some of the new sellers are obviously trying to take advantage of buyers that want to get one as fast as they can.

What do you think? Would you pay this much just to possibly get it sooner and take the chance of being scammed?

Email is social & social networks are bigger email

We read articles on how email is not social and email is a silo then followed with social networks are about openness and sharing. Actually you can make either one exactly the same.

Email buttonWhile social networks have sharing capabilities, it actually follows the same design and structure as email always has.  The difference is email has mentally been grandfathered into our minds as a silo and shelter of knowledge.

If we think of the security and sharing model they inherently act identically.  Both have groups that you can share with, such as Path, Google+ and Facebook.  Both have search ability for yourself or against other’s data if allowed, such as Facebook and Twitter.  Both email and social networks can isolate data from everyone.

So why do we feel that storing identical information in another storage facility is called sharing? Because we are told so. Sites claim email is bad, not a sharing mechanism and then in the same sentences tell you that you sharing in email is limited.

Isn’t sending an email that links to an attachment the same as a tweet that does so? If I select my followers (approve them to a protected feed in other terms) then I am setting a group of who can see my data. The same goes for URL’s. The larger group I send to the more see it.

Social networks do the same and keep track of what you can see the same as email. The interface for storage is just entirely different.  A huge database knows what tweets you have rights to see and search against via security.  Facebook social graph performs the same way. You can only see what has been shared with you or publicly.

So instead of saying the file storage mechanism in email isn’t conducive to sharing the model of access and security may simply need to be retooled to make it so.  Protected folders by groups or privacy.  Public folders for everyone to search against.  Oh wait, email has already been doing that for years.  And IBM tried mapping all this in Raven / Discovery Server years ago.  Yes, ahead of their time.

What do you think? Can email be retooled to act exactly like social networks? Is it one already? I think it is. Let’s debate.