Today Google issued a press release that they will introduce a “Chrome” Operating System in 2010. It was transparent that Google is looking to get some media attention amidst the upcoming releases of Apple’s Snow Leopard OS and Microsoft’s Windows 7 OS.
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Google was quick to add that initially Chrome OS will run on low-powered Netbooks. Clearly, this appears to be a thinly veiled attempt to re-badge Google’s Android mobile phone OS which can likely run on Netbooks already.
As far as the date for release, 2010, we’ve heard promises from Google before. Like the promise of a Mac and Linux version of the Chrome browser that, incredibly, still has not materialized, despite Chrome achieving Version 2 for Windows. In fact, Google’s “team” working on Mac Chrome is relatively tiny and has made minimal headway towards a viable release candidate. You would think that they would have had the foresight to build Chrome with cross-platform tools, but then again, even the big giants in technology can misstep at times.
Google notes that their Chrome OS will be built on open source. What they should really do instead is put some significant effort into tweaking and refining GNU/Linux on the desktop. Similar to Apple’s work on top of BSD Unix, Google’s concerted effort on Linux could potentially usher in a new desktop Linux leader: Google Linux. Today, the Linux desktop market is highly fractured by competing Linux distributions (Red Hat, Ubuntu, Suse, etc.). This fractured market is competitive and good for technical power users. However, I would venture to say that an official Linux offering from Google, if backed by solid research and development, could get some major traction for further mass market adoption of Linux as a primary desktop OS alongside Apple’s OS X and Microsoft’s Windows. Google is in a position to leverage their brand name recognition and unparalleled marketing power.
Exactly who is excited about Chrome OS (aka Android) that will initially be targeted for Netbooks in 2010?
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