Welcome to Part 2 of our intensive study regarding EWeeks Top 10 list on Chrome OS. Go ahead and read Part 1 and then let's dig in!
Are consumers ready?
As mentioned, consumers need to decide if using Chrome OS is really necessary. But Google must also consider if the consumer market is ready for its platform. It’s a question that Google must answer before it sees its Web-based operating system fail.
I’m going to make a scandalous statement right now. Consumers are not ready for Chrome OS. It’s too mind-blowing. Even though we nerds may not consider it to be mind-blowing, this is a big deal to the general public. You’re essentially buying a computer that just has a browser and no other apps. “How do I send emails”?! “How do I look at pictures”?! Shudder.
When Chrome OS launches, Google is assured that users will be able to access many of the programs they desire from the company’s online Chrome app store. Simply put, when it comes to software compatibility, Chrome OS will fall short.
This is where I think it really shows where Chrome OS is ahead of its time. We’re not really at the point on the web where we can do everything we want to do via web apps. I can’t wait for that day to happen, but it’s just not here yet. Those apps have to be somewhere. What would Andrew Levin do without OneNote access?!
If there is trouble on the software side with Chrome OS, the issue must also span the hardware market. Windows and Mac OS X users want to be able to connect their USB devices, FireWire-connected products, and other hardware to Chrome OS devices and get them to work.
Oh, good point. What happens when Grandma wants to upload pictures of her new crumb cake to her family? Luckily, Chrome OS will allow to store photos locally, but not a whole lot. Grandma is saved for now, but what about VIDEOS of her crumb cake?
Android, the competitor
Chrome OS is designed to be a lightweight operating system at launch, potentially making it effective for customers using netbooks or even tablets. The only issue for Google is that its other operating system, Android, is also capable of running quite well on those devices. Google has said that it doesn’t view its two platforms as competitors. But will consumers?
This is a huge negative among the tech reviewing community. It seems like Google has two competing projects that don’t talk to each other at all. You have a great, lightweight mobile operating system with Android, and what Google thinks is a great mobile operating system. If Google doesn't know what they are selling, how will Grandma?
Data plan considerations
As a Web-based operating system, Chrome OS requires an always-connected experience for users. Simply put, Chrome OS requires a monthly fee to work properly that many customers might take issue with.
This one seems kind of weak. If you’re getting a laptop, chances are you have Wi-Fi, and if you don’t, let’s stop speaking to each other right now. But, the 3G considerations are something. In fact, I think most power travelers would love a built-in 3G plan.
So what’s the final word on Chrome OS? People hate change, especially Grandmas. Many consider web apps the future but, to me, it still seems like a great ways off. Years, in fact. It certainly doesn’t help matters that Google is pushing two competing mobile operating systems, does it?
The folks at EWeek has put together 10 reasons why Chrome OS faces some hurdles. Fatal hurdles, at that. But, since we at Trigon are the smartest and most humble folks you’ll ever meet, we’ve decided to break down these points. Put down that pork roll and pay attention, friend.
It comes down to capability.
When it’s all said and done, customers will judge Google’s Chrome OS platform by what they can do with it. But further inspection reveals that they won’t be able to do as much as they can on, say, Windows or Mac OS X.
Good on you, EWeek. This will be the biggest hurdle of them all. Can you truly run your business in the cloud? Or at the very least, have your employees run their programs via Citrix on their Chrome OS laptops from a main Application Server? Could you run Terminal Server for most or all of your tasks? Time will tell. Cloud is the future, but ChromeOS could be ahead of its time.
Beating Windows is a tall order.
Microsoft’s Windows operating system has a dominant share over the operating system market around the world. Until Google can convince those key parties to switch, it could have a hard time making Chrome OS a success.
Converting a person, let alone a company, to a cloud based OS from their blankee, Microsoft, is no easy task. Impossible, almost. Just ask our resident MS Fanboy, Andrew Levin. He just switched to WP7 from an iPhone and will waste no time in telling you have “awesome” OneNote mobile is. Or how ”ballin’” Windows Live email is. There are many folks out there just like him. The thought of changing from Microsoft is enough to make them flip over your dinner plate. Then stomp on the food.
The enterprise consideration.
Speaking of the enterprise, it seems like one key area where Google’s operating system will fall short. If Google can’t attract the corporate world at all, it could have some trouble making Chrome OS a long-term success.
It’s like EWeek is ready my mind! At Trigon, we tend to know your enterprise needs out of the park. With that said, is your small to mid-sized business ready for a completely cloud OS? That completely depends on your situation. If most of your work can be done in a word processor, email, and some light application work, Chrome OS could be perfect for you. But what if ChromeOS doesn’t stick around for long and is deemed a failure? Danger, Danger!
The important question: Is it necessary?
When consumers finally decide if they want a product or not, they need to figure out if it’s necessary. Chrome OS is likely an unacceptable option for those searching for a single efficient device to spend their hard-earned cash compared to an operating system they know and (mostly) trust.
Very true, indeed. Chrome OS is still very much in the experimental phase. In fact, many of the new products that Google announces and promotes are those that their own engineers create in their approved downtime. Google thinks their invention is good enough for the bigtime, and allow it to become a full-time project. This provides great innovation in the field, but some never turn out as intended, i.e., Buzz, Wave, etc.
Vendor support is critical
Chrome OS could be derailed quite quickly without the proper support from vendors. The sooner it can attract consumer attention to the software platform, the sooner it can limit its chances of seeing Chrome OS become a failure.
This is where I’ll disagree slightly with EWeek. While vendor support is critical, I don’t believe it will lead to success. You can have vendors singing praises to ChromeOS, but without customer adoption, the OS will flounder.
Tune in tomorrow when Trigon gets to the nitty gritty of Chrome OS for YOU with for 6-10!
First, onto the Chrome browser updates;
This was definately the most boring part of the presentation. You know, all the mumbo jumbo about V8 and HTMhoo-ha that nobody really knows anything about. They really should have just had a slide that said "It's like, way faster" then moved onto the Web Store. Just saying, Google.
Today the Chrome Web Store is open for business. Developers have already started uploading apps, and we expect the number to grow over time. Right now the store is only available in the U.S., but will expand to many countries and currencies early next year. The store will be featured prominently in Chrome, helping people discover great apps and developers reach millions of users around the world.
To me, this was the most interesting news. The Chrome Web Store is a place to find the hottest web apps, or, most slickly designed websites. Many of the "web apps" are HTML or Flash ports of popular iPad apps. The Amazon Windowshopper and NPR web apps are nearly identical to their iPad counterparts. To me, that just raises UI questions. Why would I want to use an iPad app with a mouse? No thanks.
If anything, the Web Store is a great place to find new, well designed, intuitive web apps that you would have missed otherwise.
The test notebooks exist only to test the software—they are black, have no branding, no logos, no stickers, nothing. They do have 12.1 inch screens, full-sized keyboards and touch pads, integrated 3G from Verizon, eight hours of battery life and eight days of standby time. Chrome notebooks are designed to reach the web instantly, are easy to share among friends and family, and simply by logging in, all of your apps, bookmarks and other browser settings are there. Setting up a new machine takes less than a minute. And even at this early stage, we feel there is no consumer or business operating system that is more secure.
In the first half of next year Chrome notebooks will be available for sale from Acer and Samsung. More manufacturers will follow. Also, Chrome OS is designed to work across a wide range of screen sizes and form factors, enabling our partners to deliver computing devices beyond notebooks.
Let's be honest. We all thought Chrome OS was going to just fade away. Not so! The OS that's just a browser is finally quasi-real. Thanks to the Web App Store, you can now "install" apps to the browser. They even look like icons on the main window. Google has wisely connected these two projects to make them as seemless as possible.
It remains to be seen, though, if people have room for a cloud OS, next to their phone, tablet, laptop, desktop, and refrigerator OS. I'm excited to get one of these test units.
It's going to be great to test out Citrix's tools which make users able to access their Excel files, etc, just using a laptop running a browser. Trigon should be a leading voice on how these new tools can help your small to mid-sized business.