Today Google announced more details on the new Chrome OS, it’s not an OS release (which will be sometime next year), not even a beta release but the source code is open to the public for people to tinker with. So give it a day and people should have working copies on their machines to review.
I was reading the post of the live notes from the conference on Tech Crunch and the part that really caught my eye was this:
You cannot download and install Chrome on any machine. You will have to buy a new one.
End of next year. Before the holiday season.
I don’t like that at all.
I was looking forward to being able to throw Chrome OS onto my netbook as a quickboot alternative when I just want a quick web lookup or some thing similar. This makes it sound like you can only get it if it comes preconfigured on the device as it comes from the store.
Think about that, even Windows can be installed afterwards onto an existing OS and be given the option to dual boot into one or the other. In fact my netbook works exactly like that now. When I boot I have the choice between the initial install of Windows XP (I keep for legacy networking programs) or Windows 7 with Win7 being the 5 second default.
In fact I also have Backtrack 4 beta on the SD card where I can hit “esc” during boot and boot over to that instead of the two OS’s on the hard drive. During the POST and 5 second timer I have the choice between 3 different OS’s to go into. I was hoping Chrome OS would be similar for a quick lightweight alternative OS when I don’t want a full Windows OS.
Things may change, this is just a quick comment from a live blog. The other bad news in the quote, the fact that its due at the end of NEXT year means a lot can happen in the meantime.
Which comes to the final point. There are many great OS’s out there now that do everything I want in a quick light-weight OS. There are some really good Linux builds made especially for netbooks that take most of the hassle out of dealing with driver installs and the initial setup I ranted about in the last post. Another TechCrunch post mentioned JoliCloud which sounds very similar to what I’d like in Chrome OS, with great optimization, device sync and the ability to choose your own apps (as opposed to using all google), and it’s available for beta testing NOW.
Chrome OS still look great but the biggest news of the announcement seems to be potentially bad news IMHO.
I almost always disagree with John Herman’s Apple Butt-kissing posts over at Gizmodo. But I could not agree with him more in his post about what Chrome OS needs to “be a contender”
I’d add to it but I’ve got nothing other than a big +1 to that.