Guide to using a Chromecast as digital signage

*2019 Update*

The process still works, however there is a check box in the Google home app, go to the Device settings for your chrome cast. Click ‘Ambient Mode’. Under ‘ Personal photo curation’ set the box to ‘ Live albums only’. The rest of the guide should work.

I just wanted to share something I stumbled across. At school we have an old TV with a custom computer attached that is running some digital signage software. However, this software is terrible, clunky and not user-friendly at all. It creates too much work.


So I needed a solution for this, I was thinking of a Raspberry Pi running a custom OS. Once again it would be complicated to use (cool nonetheless). Then one day I was playing around with my Chromecast, I realised you can have it play photos from Google Albums.

Here is a basic Guide.

  • Head to Google Photos
  • Click Albums on the left & then create a new album. Make sure you name it, I’ve named each album after the Chromecast it is streaming too.
  • Up the top click add photos, upload your photos
    • Sidenote – I used Microsoft Powerpoint to create slides with the news and events and saved them as JPEG’s to upload.
  • Click the tick and that album is saved
  • I am going to presume you’ve set up your Chromecast to be on your wifi already.
  • Using the Google Home App, select the Chromecast and hit edit backdrop. Select Google Photos then select the album you just made. All done!
    • You may want to adjust other settings such as displaying weather, news & the speed of the slideshow.

I hope this helps, its a really nice cheap alternative ($50au) to commercial systems, with the benefit you can share the albums so multiple people can contribute.

There are customer Content Management System apps for Chromecast but these started at around $20USD a month and we didn’t need YouTube videos and I like the fact that if there is an issue I never need to start the stream again.

Any questions just leave a comment!

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