Google Chromecast is a $35 device designed to let you stream internet videos to your TV. But developers are already starting to port third party apps to run on the platform — and we’re not just talking about using Google’s SDK to stream video from websites and apps that wouldn’t otherwise be supported.

One developer has managed to get a Gameboy emulator up and running on the Chromecast. It actually runs natively on the Chromecast device (although it’s still displayed in a browser window), while you use buttons on a PC keyboard to control gameplay.

Chromecast gameboy

The Chromecast features a single core Marvell processor, 512MB of RAM, and 4GB of storage. While it’s not exactly a high-end device, it has far more processing power than an original Gameboy system, and the developer responsible for porting the emulator says it runs pretty well and there’s little to know delay when entering commands on a PC keyboard.

That’s despite the fact that while the emulator is running on the Chromecast hardware, the game ROM is actually hosted in the cloud.

You can find the source code and instructions for using it at Github.

This isn’t the first Chromecast hack we’ve seen since Google introduced the product on July 24th. This weekend, hackers discovered an exploit that lets users access the device using a root shell.

At $35, the Chromecast is one of the cheapest and easiest ways to access internet content on a television. Odds are that most customers won’t need or want to do anything more than that with a Chromecast.

But it’s fascinating to see how quickly hackers are turning Google’s cheap little device into more of a general purpose computer for your TV.

Support Liliputing

Liliputing's primary sources of revenue are advertising and affiliate links (if you click the "Shop" button at the top of the page and buy something on Amazon, for example, we'll get a small commission).

But there are several ways you can support the site directly even if you're using an ad blocker* and hate online shopping.

Contribute to our Patreon campaign

or...

Contribute via PayPal

* If you are using an ad blocker like uBlock Origin and seeing a pop-up message at the bottom of the screen, we have a guide that may help you disable it.

7 replies on “Chromecast hack: Running a Gameboy emulator”

  1. Very cool to see what is being done with this thing.
    Admittedly I picked up a quad core Android stick to play with too.

  2. Single Core/512MB RAM. Not really a powerful “gaming” device.

  3. Though I think it’s cool that people hack stuff as well as I see the price point of $35 being attractive, a simple tablet connected to a TV via HDMI cable runs circles around this and every other Internet stick to make this almost a pointless purchase. Granted it’s not wireless but that’s not really needed when peripherals are connected via BlueTooth to a tablet/laptop. The Hisense Sero 7 Pro still destroys this on all levels except having a $114 price difference – but you actually get a fully portable tablet too. Connect a wireless keyboard and or mouse combo to it via BlueTooth and you’d laugh at the uselessness of Chromecast. It’s kind of a cool device, but very useless compared to a full fledged tablet which retails for $149 at Walmart. Also, chances are your laptop has an HDMI port on it and BlueTooth…why don’t you get a long thin Redmere cable and go nuts with full desktop gaming, browsing, applications as you would on a PC?

    1. the point is to not have to hook anything up via wires… you’re browsing your tablet on the coach, see something interesting, and “push” it to the TV with a flick of your finger. Or if you have a party and multiple people have tablets, you can swap between sharing your photos and videos.

      1. I would still suggest a Miracast capable dongle for old TV’s. As well as a tablet (or phone or what have you) with Miracast capability built in also (more and more are coming down the pipe in the retail channels this year). Go full on and not half way with this gimped device…seriously, it would then have ALL Android apps (Netflix being one of them) as well as full on gaming from a tablet. And complete music streaming from it also. The Miracast dongles aren’t much more expensive than this $35 price point and will most definitely go down now as they compete with Chromecast.

        Did you know they have hacked the Nexus 7 (old and new) to enable Miracast wireless display?

        forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=2348991

  4. This opens up some exciting potential for gaming. I think we haven’t even scratched the surface yet. It will be interesting to see where developers take it.

Comments are closed.