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Google Announces Chrome OS: Is It Worth the Buzz?

It finally happened. Late Tuesday, Google announced it will launch the Chrome operating system (an open source, Web-based, and lightweight OS initially targeted at netbooks) in the second half of 2010. As expected, the Web went wild with hyperbole. Some called the announcement 'the mother of all bombs on its chief rival' and others said it is 'as much a threat to Microsoft as a mosquito is to a bear.' While it's probably too early to say how Chrome will pan out, plenty of pundits are giving it their best shot. Here are some of the more thought-provoking takes:

There are still plenty of questions to be answered about Google's new baby. Will the OS be able to compete with Windows? (Eventually, maybe, we say.) Will consumers opt for an OS that starts off with less bells and whistles? (If it's free, possibly, we believe.) And just how useful is an operating system that relies on the Internet when there are plenty of places in the world that still don't have access, not to mention the difficulty of actually finding a Wi-Fi hotspot when you really need one (and no, we don't think that mobile broadband is any better where you're driving across the middle of, say, Pennsylvania)?

If Google delivers on its promise of 'speed, simplicity and safety,' it could make a dent in a market long ruled by Microsoft. However, those lofty and vague promises might not hold water. Google announcing plans a year before launch demonstrates commitment for the promising concept, but only time will tell if Chrome OS is a giant-killer or simply a sidenote.

Tags: cloud, google, microsoft, netbook, newproducts, operating system, OperatingSystem, OS, top, web



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