Google Chrome OS has finally arrived 1


The big day is here … at last, the long promised super-fast Google operating system based on its Chrome web browser has been released (or perhaps has simply escaped!!) …

Its live and happening right now …

Its also anticipated that we will see the launch of a web based marketplace for web-based applications. Its all a secret … and yet its not, because it is also open-source … I’m still struggling to get my head around a secret open-source project … how the heck was that ever supposed to be kept a secret …

Lots of questions … the most obvious being … How Much? … what hardware? … so lets find out …

Chrome is growing very fast … 120 million users (that means 120 million downloads I guess, I was one and I sure as heck don’t actually use it every day) … they now have a claim that its popular because its fast …

Google instant has been added … thats where you type in a single letter and it offers the most popular page that starts with that letter  … more demos … more “its really fast” … (This “its fast” … is fast being established as an almost religious mantra here) … OK, now its not just fast, apparently its “really really” fast …

Now we have some numbers … apparently they have a new component called crankshaft for their engine (yea, bad pun) … and its really fast … It’s 50x as fast as the fastest web browsers 2 years ago and 100x faster than IE was two years ago (Yea OK, but how does it compare to Firefox and IE right now, … not exactly a fair comparison to measure against 2 year old technology … thats my skeptical side coming the the front there) …

They have an app store … gosh that looks familiar … now where have I seen something that looks like this … its sort of apple’ish don’t you think? …

We are getting demo’s of various apps … costs $1.99 … oh … we also get try-before-you-buy … nice …

Have had a paper demo (New Nork Times) … now Game(s) … (well yes, thats a big market, no surprise there ) …

Ah, now we see Amazon windowshop … Oooh what the heck, Amazon just announced Kindle for the Web … now this is a weird place to do that … I’m not getting this, that must complete with Google eBookstore (or whatever its called this week)… (Ah, Kindle for the Web is not now, its next year … and [click] its a web app … so I guess it fits …)

If you want to check some of this stuff out then chrome.google.com/webstore is the url for it … goes live today …

OK, its now about the OS … we have had its “really fast” … we are now getting … “its really easy” … just a few clicks and you are in and up and running … (sigh! if only … yea OK, I’m skeptical … I’ll try it for real first before I’m convinced)

Suspend/resume is … can you guess … yep … “really fast” …

Now some yada-yada about “Same experience everywhere” … well duh! … its a web app … of course … they have a guest mode … what you did is wiped … so no browser history to track (assuming thats what you want) …

Ah … it has an offline mode … (without that this would be dead in the water) … humm not sure its all there yet  … apparently Google docs team still working on it …

Chrome netbooks (does anybody actually use those anymore now that we have the far cooler tablets?) will ship wiFi enabled …

Partner is Verizon … some yada-yada about costs … no contracts, you pay for what you use … $9.99 for a day pass … other plans available …

It also has a corporate spin … virtualize and keep everything secure inside the data centre … no data on laptops to be left on a train or lifted in a cafe … Citrix are in the mix here … (yea, sounds great, but who is truly willing to bet their business on this right now? pioneers usually end up out in the wilderness with arrows in their backs)

Finally … its the “early days” speech … more to come, might be bugs (gasp!) … USB etc… Notebooks from various vendors coming in mid 2011

So thats more or less a wrap then … on to some yada-yada from Google CEO Eric Schmidt … then Q&A …

Here are the full details on the Pilot Program.

Conclusions (mine, not theirs)

Interesting, but I’m not getting too excited … it does not feel like a disruptive technology, just simply another option … what might draw many is simplicity, abstracting away complexity is always a smart move … but will folks be drawn to this … we have the iPad and similar clones on one side for casual browsing while on the move … and desktops for all the heavy slicing and dicing … does this fit in the middle between … I’ll suspend final judgement for now …perhaps simplicity will be key … but as for it being better, nope, I’m not sold on that, I see just another alternative.

For more and also Q&A details check out TechCrunch here


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