Swap Windows for Google OS? Not Likely, say Critics

Dennis Faas's picture

There are plenty of rumors about the final release date for Google's Chrome operating system (OS), but that hasn't stopped the search giant from touting its wide-ranging applications.

In a recent report, a Google executive boasts that most businesses could easily switch out Windows in favor of Chrome OS once the final version is released to the public.

Chrome OS Stripped Down, Simplified

Google's upcoming Chrome operating system is designed to be a stripped-down and simplified operating system that competes directly with Microsoft's Windows and Apple's Leopard.

Few industry insiders have a clue as to when the final version of the highly-anticipated Chrome OS will reach the wider public -- some reports suggest this December, while others say 2011, and still others think it won't ever reach consumers.

Google: 60 Per Cent of Businesses Could Make Switch

The latter situation seems fairly unlikely, given a recent report from the New York Times on the subject. In the report, Chrome OS chief and Google vice president of engineering Linus Upson notes that the company's new operating system has been deployed to the systems of some Google employees.

He also made one more, controversial statement. According to the report, Upson notes that immediately upon the release of Chrome OS, about 60 per cent of businesses could make the switch from Windows to the Google operating system without difficulty. (Source: cnn.com)

Upson also added that the Chrome OS may also threaten the jobs of corporate IT professionals, since software updates for the operating system will be deployed automatically via web connection.

It's worth noting that these are not direct quotes from Upson, but paraphrasing on behalf of the New York Times.

Google Apps Makes Chrome OS More Attractive

Considering the widespread use of Google Apps -- a cloud-based, free competitor to Microsoft Office -- the 60 per cent number could be achievable. Chrome OS is also being marketed at companies whose computers are used primarily for data processing and web browsing.

But critics don't really buy Google's stats. ZDNEt's Jason Hiner recently called the 60 per cent number "laughable," since Chrome OS is being aimed at netbooks, which are not commonly-used systems for most companies. (Source: zdnet.com)

Whether or not Upson is exaggerating is less important. For now, the key finding here is that it would appear Chrome OS is indeed nearing its completion.

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