Insane Chromecast pre-orders force Google to kill its free Netflix promo

Insane Chromecast pre-orders force Google to kill its free Netflix promo
Illustration by Tom Cheredar

Google has terminated a promotion for three free months of Netflix service with the purchase of its new Chromecast streaming device that launched yesterday. The reason? Overwhelming demand for the $35 gadget.

The Netflix promotion, which is valued at $24, was good for both new and existing Netflix subscribers. It was a great perk for luring in people to buy a Chromecast on top of the gadget’s already low price. For existing Netflix users, that means the Chromecast would only cost them $11 after factoring in what they would have spent on Netflix service over the next 90 days.

Chromecast itself is basically Google’s answer to Apple’s Apple TV, a low-priced streaming device that allows you to sling what you’re watching on your mobile device to your television screen. It’s meant to enhance your mobile experience by adding the option of viewing media on a larger screen.

Related: Why Chromecast could be Google’s first media gadget hit

“Due to overwhelming demand for Chromecast devices since launch, the 3-month Netflix promotion (which was available in limited quantities) is no longer available,” Google told the LA Times. VentureBeat has reached out to Google for confirmation, as well as if those that already purchased a Chromecast would still be eligible for the promotion. We’ll update this post with any new information.

The Chromecast device has already sold out from both Amazon and Best Buy, while Google’s Google Play Store has push back the shipping date by another two weeks (meaning you won’t get your gadget until a month after you order). That said, we don’t really know how many Chromecast units Google has sold in the short time since the device was release. What we do know is that demand for it is extremely high. Third-party venders on Amazon as well as eBay merchants are selling the Chromecast for over $100 in some cases.

I’d argue that even without the Netflix promotion, Chromecast still seems like a great deal for what it does. However, at $100, it definitely isn’t worth purchasing — mostly because Google has said the Chromecast functionality will be included in all Google TV hardware via a software update in the near future. (So, if you’re willing to spend $100, you might as well buy something like Vizio’s Co-Star.)