Today, at a Chrome event in San Francisco, Google showed off progress made over its Chrome line of products. Most interestingly, are the new Chrome OS and Chrome Web Store.
Chrome OS is Google's true operating system and Android is just a placeholder. Chrome OS is at the stage where we didn't want to sell pre-beta computers. "So, instead we're launching a pilot program to give test notebooks to qualified users, developers, schools and businesses in the U.S. and will expand to other countries once we get the necessary certifications.
Already, businesses such as American Airlines, Appiro, Cardinal Health, Kraft, Logitech, Virgin USA, and even the Department of Defense have contacted Google to be included in the pilot," stated Google.
Individual users, can apply to test out Chrome OS on the reference hardware via pilot program here.
Here're some highlights from the event:
- "Nothing but the Web."
- Chrome OS features a fast and simple setup process, remarkably fast boot times and an instant resume feature to minimize wait time when the OS wakes from sleep.
- Unified experience across Chrome on netbooks, desktops and more.
- Multiple user support and guest mode -- everything a user does in guest mode is private and history is deleted instantly when a session is ended.
- Updates are seamless -- no user operations are required to update the OS or apps.
- Most secure OS in the world -- security is a major focus of Chrome OS; all Chrome OS data is encrypted by default.
- Verified boot -- core OS components are in firmware that cann't be modified.
- Enterprise options -- Google is working closely with partners like Citrix to ensure the enterprise market is addressed.
- Google's Chrome OS PCs get faster over time, not slower like other PCs.
- Initial manufacturing partners include Acer, Samsung and Intel.
The first Chrome OS notebooks are due by the middle of 2011. The Chrome OS pilot program will provide a "CR-48" netbook featuring a 12.1-inch display, full-sized keyboards and touch pads, integrated 3G from Verizon, 8 hours of battery life and eight days of standby time. Interestingly, there're no hard drives, no caps lock keys and the laptop is jailbreak-friendly.
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.
One of the most interesting parts is, Verizon Wireless to offer Chrome notebook users 100MB of free data per month per user. Daily unlimited data passes will go for $9.99 per day, and other plans will be sold 1GB at a time.
Here're some Chrome OS videos:
Chrome Web Store, is a place to buy web apps that run in-browser. Everything from games to productivity apps to social media clients is on offer in the Web Store. The other side of the equation is that developers now have a way to get paid for web apps, which should help to encourage more and better web apps in the future.
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.
The Web Store is launching with familiar apps like Twitter client Tweetdeck and Popcap's popular tower-defense style game, Plants vs. Zombies. There's also Flixster, eBay, the New York Times ... well, you get the idea. Brand-name apps by the hundreds are already available at launch. It's not just apps, either: the Web Store is a one-stop shop for themes and extensions, too.