Google Confirms That Chrome OS, Chromebooks Aren't Going Anywhere
Yesterday, in a post titled "Why It's Doubtful That Google Would Merge Chrome OS and Android," I disagreed with a story The Wall Street Journal posted suggesting that Chrome OS might disappear as a standalone entity and merge with Android. The story, found here, reported that Google plans to unveil a unified, new operating system combining Android and Chrome OS in 2017 and that engineers have been working on melding the two platforms for two years.
Well, now Google has vehemently denied the report. Hiroshi Lockmeimer, senior vice president of Android and Chrome OS at Alphabet, tweeted, "There's a ton of momentum for Chromebooks and we are very committed to Chrome OS." Separately, a new blog post drives the point home in detail.
A new Google for Work blog post titled "Chrome OS Is Here to Stay" states that "...while we've been working on ways to bring together the best of both [Android and Chrome] operating systems, there's no plan to phase out Chrome OS."
All of this, of course, gets, back to an old rumor.
Ever since Google introduced the two operating systems several years ago, people have wondered which of the two might eventually become dominant and which would fade away. Our bet, though, has remained that Chrome OS isn't going anywhere. The Chrome browser has become the number two browser, ahead of Firefox, and Google's overall Chrome and Chrome OS strategies remain important.
The Google blog post adds:
"We have plans to release even more features for Chrome OS, such as a new media player, a visual refresh based on Material Design, improved performance, and of course, a continued focus on security. With our regular six-week software cycle and guaranteed auto-updates for five years, Chromebooks keep getting better over time. Finally, stay on the lookout for dozens of new Chromebooks in 2016."
Apple is enormously successful with its Mac OS, but Mac OS is not iOS. Likewise, Microsoft's Windows is not the same as Microsoft's mobile platform. We are moving into a world where mobile technology usage is so ubiquitous and important that mobile operating systems have to be dedicated to serving lean, efficient apps designed for smartphones, tablets and other new mobile devices. Chrome OS functions best as a computer-based platform at this point. Android is optimized for phones and tablets.
And now it's clear that all of this is not lost on Google.