Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Google’s strategy for introducing Chrome OS

Can we think of “Operating System” that operates entirely in cloud? An operating system that doesn’t require installation on device nor has a desktop screen. All that you need is an internet browser with good internet connection to explore apps that runs over internet.  That’s what Google’s new web based OS does. They call it “Chrome OS”.  

Well, at first instance, you feel it’s WoW, but next you start thinking about below things, that go against of this new OS, such as
  • It’s requires Internet EVERYTIME? No Internet... No Access to Apps... Emails… As I write there are no apps that work offline. Hopefully, in coming time, we might see apps that work in online/offline mode with data sync. 
  • All work/data that you do is stored in Cloud…  Chrome OS need to provide some mechanism to access/manage files locally.  Additionally, privacy/data security is still a debatable topic in Cloud Computing
  • This might promote SaaS based Apps, where SLA terms needs to be paid a great attention 
  • Performing certain tasks like photo-editing, printing jobs, working with external peripherals etc could be bit difficult and requires some workarounds to handle.
  • On performance, at any given day, it cannot compete with desktop based apps

So, just with above few points, we feel it’s not the OS to go with… We then start comparing with Mac, Windows, Linux/Unix etc and see further drawbacks down under.

Then, what Google is after, for whom it’s designed for, what’s the strategy behind?

Well, Google is aiming for users
  • That spend most of their time over Internet
  • That wants simple, easy to use interface with less or zero configuration, settings, updates
  • That wants all data to be stored at one place
  • That wants speed at work with low battery devices & minimal system requirements
  • That wants almost zero maintenance cost, free from viruses/malware, hard drive crashes, data backups
  • That wants apps (free/paid) to be downloaded from one market place (Chrome Web Store)  

In Short, it's an ideal OS for users that demands cheap, high end computing…  A perfect blend of Price and Performance

Google’s Chrome OS is already made available on devices manufactured by Samsung & Acer called “Chromebooks” that one can buy from Amazon or BestBuy.

It’s early to say how this new OS will change the dynamics of OS market & user preferences on using computing devices like desktops, laptops, chromebooks, mobiles or tablets. As Netbooks are on verge on dying, I believe this chromebooks will stay for more years. 

Google continues to surprise by launching this OS after the proven success of Android, the mobile OS, that’s creating buzz all around. 

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