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Google may make casting to a tablet as easy as holding a phone next to it

The feature would allow users to cast by simply holding their phone in front of the tablet.

Published onAugust 11, 2023

google pixel tablet photo frame 6
Rita El Khoury / Android Authority
  • Google is working on a new media casting feature for Pixel tablets.
  • The feature would make media casting as easy as placing your phone in front of the tablet.
  • It’s unclear if this feature works by using the Pixel Tablet’s ultra-wideband chip.

If you own a Google Pixel Tablet and a Pixel phone, then you have the ability to cast media from your phone to your tablet. While the function has always there, it requires you to follow a few steps. But Google may be working on a new feature that could greatly simplify the process.

Mishaal Rahman, with the help of AssembleDebug on X (formerly Twitter), appears to have discovered an introduction screen for a new feature for Pixel Tablets. That feature is a new way to cast media to your tablet from your phone. Based on the animation, this feature would allow you to cast media simply by holding your phone in front of the tablet.

Google is working on letting you cast media to your Pixel Tablet just by holding your phone in front of it!
Here’s the introduction screen for this feature.
— Mishaal Rahman (@MishaalRahman) August 10, 2023

At the moment, it’s unclear if this feature is using the Pixel Tablet’s ultra-wideband (UWB) chip, Bluetooth proximity, or NFC taps. But Rahman adds that if it is using the UWB chip, this would be the first unique use of the chip. Currently, UWB is only being used to enhance the Nearby Share feature.

Rahman also states that Android 13 has UI for a media tap to transfer feature. However, the media handoff that’s happening here isn’t being handled by the OS, but rather it’s being done by an external app. In this case, it would be Google’s Play Services.

Interestingly, Google may have hinted at this earlier this year at CES when it announced it was “developing a way for your audio content to move with you throughout your day.” Also, this isn’t the first time this animation has popped up as it was first discovered back in 2022. However, what is new is the mention of the feature being for the Pixel Tablet.

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