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  • Thinking of an OS change this New Year?

    The web is what you make of it. That is how Google sees it. The Internet giant’s latest effort in making the Internet easy to use is the popular Chrome OS and Chromebook. A Chromebook is a computer running Google Chrome OS. This device is a distinct kind of personal computer which falls between a pure cloud-based client and a traditional laptop. The first devices for sale will be manufactured by Acer and Samsung.

    Chrome OS is a Linux based operating system, it is designed by Google exclusively for web applications. Google announced this operating system in July 2009 and made it an open source project, named Chromium OS. Since the only software application that Chrome OS can run locally is the Google Chrome browser, a Chromebook is often described as a browser-in-a-box.


    • Speed: One of the major advantages of Chrome OS is its impressive speed. Due to the fact that there is virtually no local program to load, the start-up time for Chrome OS is expected to be in seconds rather than minutes.
    • Security: Another advantage Google Chrome OS has over traditional operating systems is in the area of computer security. Users will no longer have to install antivirus programs to protect their computers.
    • Support for processor: Google promises that it will be writing native code for both popular net-book CPUs x86 & arm architectures.
    • Applications: Any Web application that runs in a standards compliant browser should work on a Chrome OS device. But Chrome OS is focused on supporting new protocols such as HTML 5, which, among other improvements, natively supports rich media.
    • Support to Microsoft office: Chrome OS would handle Office documents - via Microsoft Office Live, the free Web app version of Office available to Windows Live users. If a user clicks on an .xls document, Chrome launches Excel via the browser in Office Live.

    The Google Chrome OS Interface

    Chatting on Gtalk in Chrome OS

    Why Chrome OS over Windows?

    Windows is the most popular OS used since the computer era began. So, will the users get ready to leave their lovely windows?

    Yet to begin with, the threat to Microsoft, and the promise to Google, from Chrome is minimal. First, the Chromebook is not aimed at the average consumer. It’s aimed at the enterprise customers who are Microsoft’s bread and butter. Google, with the Chromebook, is aiming to eat Microsoft’s lunch – and its dinner and breakfast too. How? By nibbling away at Windows and Office revenues by finding the companies that have finally had enough of Office upgrades, and aren’t that keen on the Windows upgrade cycle – and associated costs – either. The other target: schools – where Microsoft first gets its customers.

    Definitely, if we see in terms of cost, software being the first priority in India rather than security, Chrome OS could be a winner over windows. Also, Google is a hugely popular brand in India, so if brand loyalty is considered, then Chrome OS & Windows are almost even!

    Chrome OS has got an additional benefit since Indian authorities are pressing it hard with NASSCOM against software piracy. So if a user has to choose between Windows 7 costing INR 3500+ and Google Chrome OS which is free, he will be more inclined towards the Chrome OS.

    Now if we weigh performance then those who have used Google and its products have got hardly anything to complain. On the other hand you will get more complaints than compliments for Windows and other MS products.

    Why Not Chrome OS?

    • Since the new operating system is web-centric, users are required to have anytime access to the Internet to maximize Chrome usage.
    • it is still unclear as to whether or not web applications can match disk-based applications in features and performance.
    • The lack of control over automatic updates and no support of data backups are severe disadvantages of Chromebook for businesses.
    • While the whole cloud bet that Chrome OS makes is a novelty, it will work for some users who want to use local apps and data, and are used to doing so. The cloud focus will be an advantage with some, but not for all users.

    Chrome is, make no mistake, a dagger poised over Microsoft’s heart. The only question is whether it’s made of steel or rubber.

    Google Chrome OS Video Preview