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Chromecast hits one billion milestone, YouTube viewing time up 50%

chromecastUsers of Google’s Chromecast streaming device have now ‘cast’ content more than 1 billion times, while viewing time on YouTube is up 50% year-on-year, according to Google.

Speaking on the firm’s fourth quarter results call, Omid Kordestani, Google’s chief business officer and special advisor to the CEO, said that Chromecast usage per device has increased by 60% since launch due to a “growing roster of new apps and features” and that “just last week, we saw our 1 billionth tap of the cast button.”

Turning his attention to YouTube, Kordestani said that the Google-owned video site now has more than 1 billion users and that every day people watch “hundreds of millions of hours of video” on YouTube, generating “billions of views.”

“Watch time is up 50% year-over-year. We continue to invest in our YouTube Partners and Partner revenue has increased by more than 50% year-over-year,” said Kordestani.

Without breaking down the figure, he said that that mobile revenue on YouTube is up more than 100% year-over-year and claimed that YouView’s TrueView ad format, where advertisers only pay if someone watches their ad, “continues to do very well.”

“Our digital content businesses are strong. I’m excited about Google Play’s development. Movies are now available in more than the 102 countries, music in 58, and books in 65. It’s growing internationally at unprecedented speed,” said Kordestani.

He added that Google Play and YouTube “drove the majority” of the US$15 million sales that controversial Sony Pictures Entertainment movie The Interview generated in its opening weekend, after the studio opted for an online-only release after falling victim to a large-scale corporate hack.

Overall, Google reported consolidated revenues of US$18.10 billion for the quarter ended December 31, 2014, an increase of 15% compared to the fourth quarter of 2013. GAAP operating income in the fourth quarter of 2014 was $4.40 billion, or 24% of revenues. This compares to GAAP operating income of $4.43 billion, or 28% of revenues, in the fourth quarter of 2013.