July 8, 2009

Google declares total war on Microsoft

Google blogged Tuesday night about a new project, the Google Chrome Operating System. Highlights include:

Obviously, Google Chrome OS is a direct attack on Microsoft — even more so than Google Wave, which I’ve predicted will “play merry hell with Microsoft Outlook, Microsoft Word, Microsoft Exchange, Microsoft SharePoint, and more,” or for that matter than Google Mail and the rest of Google Apps. Taken together, Google’s initiatives suggest that an all-out Google-Microsoft war is coming, in a conflict that many people have been expecting — and analyzingfor years.

So how will this all shake out? Well, let’s start with some basic points:

So while Google may kill Microsoft’s client business some day, it clearly won’t happen for quite a while, Techcrunch’s excitement notwithstanding. We’re talking a multi-year effort before there’s any realistic chance of Microsoft being toppled. On the other hand, it’s hard to think of major software compatibility issues that won’t quickly be addressed, except Microsoft’s own product and, probably, MMO games — assuming, of course, Chrome OS gets enough initial traction for anybody to care. So intermediate- and long-term, Microsoft’s PC business is very vulnerable indeed.

The bulk of Google’s announcement follows (emphasis added):

Google Chrome OS is an open source, lightweight operating system that will initially be targeted at netbooks. Later this year we will open-source its code, and netbooks running Google Chrome OS will be available for consumers in the second half of 2010. Because we’re already talking to partners about the project, and we’ll soon be working with the open source community, we wanted to share our vision now so everyone understands what we are trying to achieve.

Speed, simplicity and security are the key aspects of Google Chrome OS. We’re designing the OS to be fast and lightweight, to start up and get you onto the web in a few seconds. The user interface is minimal to stay out of your way, and most of the user experience takes place on the web. And as we did for the Google Chrome browser, we are going back to the basics and completely redesigning the underlying security architecture of the OS so that users don’t have to deal with viruses, malware and security updates. It should just work.

Google Chrome OS will run on both x86 as well as ARM chips and we are working with multiple OEMs to bring a number of netbooks to market next year. The software architecture is simple — Google Chrome running within a new windowing system on top of a Linux kernel. For application developers, the web is the platform. All web-based applications will automatically work and new applications can be written using your favorite web technologies. And of course, these apps will run not only on Google Chrome OS, but on any standards-based browser on Windows, Mac and Linux thereby giving developers the largest user base of any platform.

Google Chrome OS is a new project, separate from Android. Android was designed from the beginning to work across a variety of devices from phones to set-top boxes to netbooks. Google Chrome OS is being created for people who spend most of their time on the web, and is being designed to power computers ranging from small netbooks to full-size desktop systems. While there are areas where Google Chrome OS and Android overlap, we believe choice will drive innovation for the benefit of everyone, including Google.

We hear a lot from our users and their message is clear — computers need to get better. People want to get to their email instantly, without wasting time waiting for their computers to boot and browsers to start up. They want their computers to always run as fast as when they first bought them. They want their data to be accessible to them wherever they are and not have to worry about losing their computer or forgetting to back up files. Even more importantly, they don’t want to spend hours configuring their computers to work with every new piece of hardware, or have to worry about constant software updates. And any time our users have a better computing experience, Google benefits as well by having happier users who are more likely to spend time on the Internet.

We have a lot of work to do, and we’re definitely going to need a lot of help from the open source community to accomplish this vision. We’re excited for what’s to come and we hope you are too. Stay tuned for more updates in the fall and have a great summer.

Comments

10 Responses to “Google declares total war on Microsoft”

  1. Google to launch Google Chrome OS « Norway for dummies on July 8th, 2009 4:51 am

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  2. Google declares total war on Microsoft | High technology information on July 8th, 2009 6:45 am

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  3. Derek on July 8th, 2009 10:32 am

    I have a feeling that when Microsoft does fail it will be more quickly then most expect.

  4. Google OS – What impact to developers?? « C# Hacker – The Rambling Coder on July 8th, 2009 1:47 pm

    [...] Google declares total war on Microsoft [...]

  5. Tech Club | Small Business Technology News and Innovations on July 9th, 2009 1:00 pm

    [...] Google Declares Total War on Microsoft [...]

  6. RC on August 1st, 2009 4:37 pm

    I don’t understand why Google doesn’t focus on information retrieval? There are already so many linux variants.

  7. IT tech crazy on August 4th, 2009 4:25 am

    This is interesting, any beta versions so far?

  8. IT tech crazy on August 4th, 2009 4:27 am

    Will Google Chrome also take over the server level OS, computer OS and network IOS?? Just some crazy thoughts. There are so many possibilities when it comes to servers, computer and network operating systems (OS).

  9. Email on June 8th, 2010 1:54 pm

    Like it or not Windows is the predominant OS. Sure there is Mac OS and Linux as well, but really no other OS has the plethora of applications both commercial and open source to rival Windows (yet). Google’s new upcoming OS won’t be replacing most people’s desktop operating systems anytime soon, you won’t be able to play games on it for a start.

    Sure a cloud based operating system is a great idea, but unless it is for a tablet PC / Netbook or Laptop it isn’t of much use; a cloud based OS won’t be able to support gaming and some applications that rely on propietry operation system APIs and languages to function correctly.

    Google switching to Linux makes sense, but they won’t ever be able to completely migrate to Linux for quality and testing reasons. Also, most operating systems are quite secure, it’s the software that interfaces with the operating system itself that is the cause of most exploits in all major operating systems and rarely within the operating system itself.

    Cloud based computing still has a little while to go before it can truly replace an operating system.

  10. Media Reaction – Google Announces “Chrome” Operating System based on Linux | Development Website.in on November 28th, 2010 4:36 am

    [...] AppScout, DailyFinance, Netbook Choice, T3.com News, Electronic Pulp, Gizmodo, Deep Jive Interests, Text Technologies, TECH.BLORGE.com, ReadWriteWeb, I4U News, Techgeist, SlashGear, istartedsomething, Blogation, [...]

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