2009-11-19

ChromeOS could be game changer

Just got home and was reading the news today about Google's ChromeOS. And after seeing a couple of videos of what this OS is going to be about, I think this can be a game changer. Think about it, every day we spend most of our time doing something on the web: email, chatting, social networking, buying, selling, research, studying, etc... Now granted, being a developer, my work is done all on the local machine, thus on the local OS, but that's true for a very small portion of the population. For the vast majority of people using a computer, all the actions mentioned previously are done on the internet via a web browser. The only thing they need the local computer for is to store pictures and music.

What Google is doing with the ChromeOS is making using a computer simpler and thus more accessible to people who still don't want to use a computer, or simply find one hard to use. Recently I've had a friend get a MacBook and an iPhone, one of the first things she mentioned is how easy it was to setup everything she uses on a daily basis for her professional and personal life. If people can eventually say that about a computer running ChromeOS, then Google has won. Ever hear anyone say that about Windows? hmmm. It has become easier yes (especially with Windows 7), but it is still not as simple.

Another good thing about ChromeOS is that it is basically a browser frontend. So that means more Flex and AIR applications will be able to reach the masses. So one unified platform to create applications that can run of various devices (netbook, mobile, PCs)...one step closer to utopia :)

9 comments:

Matthew Fabb said...

I don't think ChromeOS will run AIR applications, as nothing is installed on the computer, as everything is done through the browser, which I think it one of the OS' biggest weaknesses. The way I understand in how ChromeOS works, if you are offline and didn't pre-load any applications in a browser tab, before going offline, then you can't do anything on the computer.

Personally, I think something closer to the AIR model where you have the guts of the web application downloaded or installed on the computer would make more sense. As your computer doesn't become an expensive paper weight if you start it up without an wifi connection.

I also think that a lot of people are going to have problems with having no local files at all, as I don't think many in the general public is ready 100% into the cloud. They want to be able to access local pictures, music and video files.

I think people are more likely to use Android on a netbook, where you don't lose out on having local files and can run native applications when offline.

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