Introducing the Google Chrome Operating System

Really not much of a surprise given the direction that Google’s development team has been going over the last year or two, especially with the release of Google Chrome, their slick Web browser, but check it out, Google just announced Google Chrome OS.
The company describes it thusly:

“Google Chrome OS is an open source, lightweight operating system that will initially be targeted at netbooks. Later this year we will open-source its code, and netbooks running Google Chrome OS will be available for consumers in the second half of 2010. Because we’re already talking to partners about the project, and we’ll soon be working with the open source community, we wanted to share our vision now so everyone understands what we are trying to achieve.”

Can you run it on your laptop? Possibly. They say “Google Chrome OS will run on both x86 as well as ARM chips and we are working with multiple OEMs to bring a number of netbooks to market next year.”
If you’ve been paying attention, Google now has Google Docs (including a Word, PowerPoint and Excel competitor), Gmail (an Outlook competitor), Google Talk (competing with MSN Instant Messaging), Google Calendar, Picasa, Google Maps, and, soon enough, Google Drive (which hasn’t yet been released, but now we know why, I surmise). Oh, and today, Google also announced that most of these have come out of beta. Coincidence? I don’t think so. (and there’s more too. Check out the full list of Google apps and Web-based services)
And don’t forget the significance of Google Gears, which lets you run many of the core Web-based applications while you’re offline. Want to work on a document, fine tune a presentation and respond to a half-dozen email messages while on a flight to NYC? Not a problem.
Now the question is… when will it be available for download? I have an Asus Netbook that’s just begging for a new operating system.
By the way, if I were at Microsoft, I’d be getting very, very anxious.
Do the numbers: there are thirty million active Google Chrome web browser users. If that’s 85% Windows users and 20% are willing to take the jump and try Chrome OS, that’s 5.1 million users, computer users who aren’t therefore using and buying new versions of Microsoft Windows…

9 comments on “Introducing the Google Chrome Operating System

  1. Dave,
    Presently, I don’t think this is going to be a big threat for Windows Anyway.
    Applications than run from the web/cloud can’t replace desktop applications entirely, at least for the next 4-5 years.
    There will be a specific set of target users for this, like the Atom pcs – and you’ll keep it as a secondary or good to have option.
    But as I see it, I don’t think any body is going to un-install windows for Chrome

  2. what’s the “tp” protocol in your link to the list of google apps? firefox doesn’t know what to do with it. neither do I.
    nevertheless, enjoyed your article.

  3. I think the main implication of this is not going to be people uninstalling Windows so much as fewer systems going out with Windows pre-installed.
    At the same time, it’s likely where Google will eat into market share is more in replacing Ubuntu and other Linux distros as the Windows alternative of choice for netbook manufacturers.
    So it’s more likely that netbook manufacturers might ship Chrome instead of Ubuntu or Xandros than they would be to ship it instead of Windows. Unless consumers flock to the Chrome-based machines and turn up their noses at Windows-based machines, it’s the Linux distros that are in the line of fire more than Windows.

  4. Its groundbreaking idea from Google web OS and they are planning to wipe out Windows in a most strategic manner. Google clearly pointing to Microsoft when they say “The operating systems that browsers run were designed in an era where there was no web”. But there are few questions which are unanswered like what will happen when we will go offline in Chrome OS? Can we use offline applications like iTunes or Photoshop? Can we run third party applications? How they are going to make profit from it ? I am also bit concerned whether Chrome OS will be embraced by enterprises as it is open source and web based as there is always a security issue….Just wait another thought can Chrome OS will become a global hit especially in small countries where internet is very fickle. But leaving these things aside its going to be win-win situation for the users and it will be interesting to witness the war between giants.

  5. If we think of cloud computing, what guess I is there would be more then one service providers like google, offering cloud computing, like IBM, Oracle etc. So what I can think is there would be nobody dominating the market the way microsoft is doing now, because it would be platform independence, you can put anything on the desktop

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *