Are you sold on the idea behind Google’s Chrome OS?
Posted by Alex Nguyen
Google’s Chrome OS seems to be a hot topic in the tech world over the last 2 days. For those that don’t know, Chrome OS is an operating system that is based on Google’s popular Chrome web browser. The idea behind the operating system is that it is “web-centric,” meaning most if not all of what you do on devices running the OS is done over the Internet. Data, media files, applications, most will be saved in the increasingly popular “cloud.” This term is used to refer to things that are hosted or saved on the Internet. With everything backed up over the cloud, there’d be no need for hardware components like hard drives, so the risk of losing your personal data due to hardware malfunctions is reduced. Sounds ideal right? Well then, why am I not completely sold on the idea yet? Read on to hear me rant and see if you agree/disagree.
So Google is trying to do something pretty BIG here…Chrome OS is thought to be an innovative alternative to traditional laptops and portable computers. They think this thing is really going to catch on and catch on BIG. Well, I don’t know about you, but there are a few drawbacks to the idea behind Chrome OS. For instance, the MAJORITY of the world is already using one of two computer operating systems, either Windows or Mac. Most of the software and programs out there that we use on a daily basis in our personal, educational, and professional lives revolve around these two operating systems. So by introducing Chrome OS and the idea behind cloud computing, Google is trying to impact a VERY large industry, and quite honestly, I don’t think it’ll catch on. Why? Here are some more reasons why I don’t think Chrome OS will do as well as Google thinks it will.
Many of the just announced “Chromebooks,” as these devices running Chrome OS are called, are priced around the $350-$400 price range. For this amount of money, one could easily purchase a fully-featured laptop that can do most of the things that a Chromebook can and MUCH MORE. Google’s touting Chromebooks’ ability to turn on instantly from sleep mode, well, MacBook Airs and other laptops can already do that. They claim that ALL Chromebooks will be able to fully boot within 8 seconds and make it seem like it’s an amazingly new feature, but it’s not. Like I said, my MacBook Air can already do this. They tout the ability to access your stuff anywhere…are we talking about files here? If we are, there are plenty of cloud based services already out there like Dropbox that do one heck of a job at allowing you to “access your stuff anywhere.” I mean, just look at the picture above, which highlights Chrome OS’ main features. All of these things can already be done on a laptop computer, in addition to things like installing and using third party software that requires a CD-drive, playing DVD movies, and most importantly, being able to access files without the Internet. Now, I don’t know the exact details of Chrome’s cloud service, but what if you need to access your things and you don’t have Internet access, can you still get to them?
I think the main argument for Chrome OS is that you will be able to do all of the things that non-heavy computer users do like surf the web, consume media, and create/edit office based documents and in addition, save everything online. So really, it’s not bringing anything new to the table besides the ability to keep everything in the cloud. Is this ability really worth switching from the mainstream and widely used Windows and Mac operating systems? I don’t think so. Sound off in the comments and share your agreeing/conflicting opinions.
Posted on May 12, 2011, in Commentary and tagged browser, chrome, chrome os, chrome web browser, chromebook, cloud, google, internet, operating, os, samsung series 5, system, web, web base. Bookmark the permalink. 8 Comments.