Google's 4K-ready Chromecast Ultra is now available through Australian retailers including JB Hi-Fi, Harvey Norman and Officeworks at an asking price of $99. In addition to supporting Ultra HD video from apps including Netflix and YouTube, Chromecast Ultra is compatible with both HDR10 and Dolby Vision high dynamic range video content.
Much like past Chromecast devices, the Chromecast Ultra is still predominantly designed for being video content from a smartphone to a TV. Rather than acting as a mirroring solution, Chromecast's secret sauce is that content is streamed directly to the dongle (at least after a smartphone or tablet is used to select what you want to watch). This frees up your smartphone or tablet, and should result in lower latency viewing experience.
Notably, Google says Chromecast Ultra features major Wi-Fi, performance, and reliability improvements; as a result, it's almost twice as fast when loading content. Chromecast Ultra is also the first Chromecast to feature an Ethernet port, just in case your Wi-Fi isn't fast enough for 4K streaming. The Ethernet port is built into the Chromecast Ultra's power adapter.
While Chromecast Ultra will still work with a non-4K TV, you'll want a 4K TV to justify the premium. Locally, Chromecast Ultra is $40 more than a standard Chromecast.
Internationally, Google has begun offering 4K movie rentals and purchases through Google Play Movies & TV, but these don't appear to be available in Australia yet.