Whenever someone tells me they need a new TV, but they don’t want to pay through the nose for above-average performance, features, and size, I steer them towards Vizio.
Another reason to love Vizio smart TVs: They replicate a lot of the functionality of Google’s remarkable Chromecast. This is something I first noticed when I did my Chromecast review, but I didn’t realize just how extensive this functionality was until last night, when I found myself able to “fling” Youtube content from my iPad directly to the TV. Here’s how it works: Mobile apps like Netflix and Youtube now have a “cast” button — the button you’re supposed to use to send audio and video to a Chromecast device. But Vizio has smartly used the same “casting protocol” that Chromecast apparently utilizes. So if you’re watching a movie on Netflix or a video on Youtube and you want to continue watching it on your TV, just hit the “Cast” button and select “VIZIO DTV” (see above screenshot of the Youtube app for the iPad). The Vizio’s built-in Netflix/Youtube app will kick in and pick up right where you were on your smartphone/tablet. You can then use your mobile device to control the video on the TV.
Note: I’ve only done it with Netflix and Youtube, but I’ll try some more apps next time I get a chance. I’m guessing that any service built-in to the TV will work, so long as there is a corresponding mobile app.
Oh, and, of course, the TV and the mobile device need to be on the same wifi network.