Google Chrome OS: New Kid on the Block

It was inevitable that Google would enter the Operating Systems market (although you could say they already have with Google Android). True to form, Google have introduced something that defies convention. They have introduced an Operating System that promises to be all about “speed, security and simplicity”.

If you have used the excellent Google Chrome browser, then the user-interface will seem very familiar. Have a look at the following video to get an idea of what Googles new OS will look like (This is from an early concept video, back in July 2008)

Here is a very simplistic overview of what Google Chrome OS actually is:

I don’t think Chrome OS is going to replace existing Operating Systems overnight. However, the one place that it will make a huge impact is with netbooks. This OS is ideal for the netbook architecture (low specification hardware, limited disk space, limited screen real estate) and is exactly where Google are currently pitching their new baby. Google aren’t dumb, sales of netbooks have actually experienced growth during this recession, contradicting the rest of the computing market. This is partly due to the low cost of these devices, but also down to people wanting an internet device that they could use on the go with a battery life to compliment it (netbooks get battery life ranging from 6 to 12 hours).

It doesn’t end with netbooks though, as shown by this comment from Google

Google Chrome OS is an open source, lightweight Operating System that will initially be targeted at netbooks.

To help this transition from netbook to laptop or desktop pc will be the fact that Chrome OS will be completely open-source. This means that anyone can contribute to the coding and driver support. The next couple of years will be very interesting for the Operating System market. In fact the past couple of years have been very interesting for computing and the web, thanks to Google (gMail, Google maps, Google Docs, Google Reader, Google Checkout etc.).

Lastly, one of the big promises from Google is that Chrome OS will be secure. In fact the way that the OS functions means that it is impossible highly unlikely that malware/viruses could exist on a Chrome Operating System. This is mainly to do with the fact that the Operating System is on a drive that is read only (no chance of a virus “writing” itself maliciously to your file system). Could this be the end of viruses? Unlikely.

If you fancy giving Google Chrome OS a try, check out this article from TechCrunch

What do you think of Chrome OS? Would you use it? Leave your comments below.

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