Of course the rumors were always out there, at least for the last year, so when Google announced to day that they were coming out with their own operating system, some people were surprised, but many people who dabble online were wondering just what they thought they were doing.
This might end up being a good OS, but who’s going to know? Unlike Microsoft, it’s hard to imagine that Google will be able to convince a lot of computer makers to switch to their new OS just because they’re Google. Some might be inclined to try if it’s free, which it just might be, but it’s not going to gain a lot of attention initially, if at all.
Still, they had to do it, just as Microsoft feels they have to try to get into the search market stronger with their latest effort (how many is this now?), Bing (does anyone else ever want to break out into a song when they see that?). But one has to wonder what the ulterior motives of it all is.
Yeah, I’m sounding like a conspiracy guy, but let’s look at this for a minute. First they come out with Google Apps, which mimic all the Microsoft Office products only it’s a free online service. However, you store all your records on Google’s servers; do we really know that they don’t have the capability to scan all those records and do something with all that information?
Then they do an end-round on Firefox by developing their own browser, which they say will be faster than any other and work better with Google since they developed it. Mozilla supposedly really didn’t know until late that Google was working on the project, and when they found out, along with the rest of us, we all questioned what the relationship would be with the Mozilla Foundation, whom Google used to fund; they still might.
To date, Microsoft is still leading on office products (by the way, who else asks themselves why Microsoft has both Office and Works, yet they’re not compatible with each other?), and Mozilla is still holding a strong second. Truthfully, I think Chrome is still down around 5th, but don’t quote me on that one. I don’t know all that much about Google Apps to be able to talk about why Microsoft is still killing them when it’s free, but I do know about Firefox enough to talk about it.
Firefox is the bomb because of all the add-ons you can attach to it, which can do so many things. Neither IE nor Chrome nor Opera or anyone else can make that claim. Sure, even with the new Firefox 3.5, which I like, we all know that Firefox isn’t the fastest browser out there; Opera has always made that claim in the past (turns out that lately it might not be true). But it’s the most customizable, therefore the most fun and the most productive.
So, what about the Chrome OS? It’s best feature might be that there won’t be any viruses for it for a long time. The worst features is that, from what I’m hearing, it might not work with any of the Microsoft products on the market right now, and it’s unsure how they’ll work with other products. Sure, there’s Google Apps, but it’s not universally used, so at some point you need more in an OS than being able to tell people to load it, then go online to do everything. And, just to mention this, but right now it’s only for notebooks.
All that, and then there was this article from PC World titled 5 Ways Microsoft Will Bring the Hurt to Google Chrome OS that’s an interesting read. Microsoft isn’t just sitting around waiting for Google to catch up.
I’m certainly not the biggest Microsoft fan out there, especially when it comes to Vista, but one has to acknowledge that Microsoft is firmly entrenched in our computer lives, and we’d really be in a lot of mess if we had to deal with another operating system that has limits to what it can allow us to use and do.
It should be an interesting battle over the next five years.