Google unveils Chrome OS with source code, expects to launch it in one year

Google hopes to launch its Chrome OS to power new netbooks by next year, saving all content directly to the cloud

Google has just unvield its Chrome OS that it hopes will be powering netbooks by 2010.

The Chrome OS will actually operate entirely in the cloud. It will not store any data locally on the
machine. The machine bypasses the bootloader and immediately launches the browser. The idea is, you should be able to acess your data anywhere and anytime.

Google vice president of product management Sundar Pichai said yesterday during the unveiling that, “If I lose my Chrome machine, I should be able to go out, buy a new [machine] and re-create my previous computing experience easily.”

The advantage is that anything you create or modify anything on your machine, making the changes immediately available for anyone to use anywhere as the data is stored in the cloud.

Chrome OS has the same feel as the Chrome browser already available. The apps you’ll be running such as word-processing apps (such as Google Docs) will run in tabs and panels just like having different websites opened in tabs on your browser.

As all data resides in the cloud, naturally, there are many security concerns. Google maintains security is its top priority. The Google Chrome OS auto-updates entirely by itself and even auto patches itself is malaware is found on the system. Google also says the apps are more secure compared to installing system based apps because the apps do not have system privileges.

Google did not provide any beta version of the new OS, but did confirm that it would be officially
launched in one year from now.

Readying for the launch, which isn’t really all that far away, Google today released the source code for
Chrome OS for developers to begin developing apps for the platform.

The netbooks are confirmed to include solid-state hard drives and 802.11n WiFi. You can expect Chrome OS netbooks to be priced at about the same levels as existing netbooks currently are, according to Google. No other specific details were disclosed.

Pichai also confirmed that Google is in talks with telecoms about offering Chrome OS netbooks.

It is difficult to predict just how successful Chrome netbooks could be.

Given compatibility issues with software, and likely hardware, the netbooks would have to be fairly discounted for the low price to serve as an incentive for people to buy them.

Otherwise, people will just pay the added premium (or the same price) to purchase a fully functional Windows based netbook. Additionally, as software vendors, including Microsoft, make their way to building cloud apps, they would work just as well on other non-Chrome netbooks.

Google also confirmed that Chrome browser will be released for Mac OS X and Linux by the end of the
year.


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Hercules holds a B.Comm Finance from Ryerson University in Toronto, Canada. He is a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) level 3 candidate. He was previously a contributor at FiLife, a finance website owned by Dow Jones and IAC. Write to hercules@business2press.com
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  • JLRivers

    “The advantage is that anything you create or modify anything on your machine, making the changes immediately available for anyone to use anywhere as the data is stored in the cloud.”
    Who wrote this? A two year old?

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