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Gmail pioneer: Chrome OS will die or join Android

updated 05:15 pm EST, Tue December 14, 2010

Gmail vet predicts Chrome OS dies in 2011

Gmail's core developer Paul Buchheit today said in a prediction that he expected Chrome OS to die in 2011. The former Google employee and FriendFeed creator expected that it would either be ended outright or else "merged" with Android. In a defense on FriendFeed, he noted that there was no point to Chrome OS and argued that even the Cr-48 netbook was a mistake.

"ChromeOS has no purpose that isn't better served by Android (perhaps with a few mods to support a non-touch display)," he wrote. "I was thinking, 'is this too obvious to even state?', but then I see people taking ChromeOS [sic] seriously, and Google is even shipping devices for some reason."

Critics have noted that Android already has an HTML5-capable browser and not only supports web apps but can run native apps and supports much more offline content. Being originally designed for smartphones, it has much of the quick start support and low power consumption built into Chrome OS. Either operating system is free, but it's not necessarily certain that Chrome OS netbooks will cost significantly less than Windows models that could already run the Chrome browser.

Tablets may also jeopardize Chrome OS' success. While it can extend to touchscreens, the platform was designed for a mouse and keyboard and could be undermined by the decline of netbooks as the iPad and Android 3.0 tablets get more sway.

The creation of the platform is even known to have gone against the advice of Google chief Eric Schmidt, who himself had seen his former employer Sun try and fail to launch a network-based Java computer concept. Google co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin are believed to have pushed ahead in spite of Schmidt's early advice.

Google hasn't responded to the commentary, although it has lately pitched Chrome OS as ideal for business due to the lightweight requirements, constant updates and tight security. The first Chrome OS portables won't ship until mid-2011, when Acer and Samsung try their first models. [via TechCrunch]




by MacNN Staff

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Comments

  1. iphonerulez

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +2

    Well, it's nice to hear that Chrome will

    join the dodo bird in extinction. This might shut up the fanboys and analysts that think the Chrome OS is going to take over the world along with Android. It's nice that there is an alternative OS if it will somehow take away some Windows licenses, but if it's only an OS where you can work online with it, it doesn't seem that compelling. I'm surprised that this dude is saying that Chrome won't be around very long considering all those Chrome notebooks that are being built. I figure an OS like Chrome might be useful in libraries and schools.

  1. Joe05

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +4

    Chrome OS

    This guy is right on the money, Google already has a light and flexible OS in Android, this is just a distraction and will hopefully die next year when Google comes to it's senses.

  1. Haywire

    Joined: Dec 1969

    -2

    Reminds me of a Randy Newman ditty

    "Short people (substitute Chrome OS) got no reason to live."

    I'm humming it in my mind.

  1. chippie

    Joined: Dec 1969

    -1

    Chrome OS Has The Power To Surprise

    I downloaded Chrome OS 3 days ago. And boot it from a thump drive. Since then, I have read every article and review that I have seen. I am excited about it for a few reasons: Losing a device running Chrome OS doesn't mean losing the settings and data accessed with it. No matter how large the storage on my computing devices, I am always shuffling data to maintain at least 10GB of free space so I can comfortably do what I want without running out of space. I have multiple external drives and they are also filling up. So, I basically need to start learning to trust storing non-sensitive data on the cloud to simplify and (physically) remove storage clutter from my life.
    Putting data into the cloud with this OS doesn't mean putting it all on Google's servers.
    Like sms'ing and social networking this cloud based OS is going to catch on with some sub-set of users and quite frankly explode like the two examples I just mentioned.
    One month after the start of Google's trial with the laptops, I think the tech world may be very surprised by how many people have downloaded and are using the OS. And perhaps like it and see it as yet another viable way to compute. I Can not wait for Google to start releasing figures.
    I am enjoying feeling like a pioneer!

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969

    -4

    wait

    Some guy who USED to work at google, and whose claim to fame is that he 'pioneered' gmail (wow, an online mail system that uses labels instead of folders - how innovative) thinks Chrome OS is going to die or fold into Android, and his word is taken as anything except idle speculation.

    Because it seems other people here think Android is dead and it will all move to ChromeOS.

  1. dimmer

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +1

    Makes sense, kinda...

    So right now Google are trying to write two OS'es and support everything they need via Google's infrastructure? And unlike, say, Apple which has a desktop OS and a mobile OS, Google's two OS'es are both mobile, low power, web-based devices? It seems like as phones become tablets and tablets replace netbooks there is little to be gained by NOT pulling them together.

    Gee, I don't know if that made sense. I hope so, as I don't have time to fix it right now.

  1. djbeta

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    honestly...

    just downloaded Chrome.. it sucks.

    it's a glorified web browser. I can do everything Chrome can do with my MacBook Pro, and a a whole lot more..

    I can do more with my iPhone..

    I guess it's marketable to 3rd world countries... $100 laptop, etc..

    that's their market.

  1. djbeta

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    honestly...

    just downloaded Chrome.. it sucks.

    it's a glorified web browser. I can do everything Chrome can do with my MacBook Pro, and a a whole lot more..

    I can do more with my iPhone..

    I guess it's marketable to 3rd world countries... $100 laptop, etc..

    that's their market.

  1. Cronocide

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    *Sigh*

    And yet I still have to download it (and use it) because I'm supposed to know how to troubleshoot any OS. DARN YOU GOOGLE!

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