Chrome OS, the coming operating system from Google for lightweight mobile computers will have a version for business, it was revealed today by Google.
This version will come in 2011, following the release of the consumer edition later this year. Chrome OS has been causing a stir in tech circles since it was initially rumored to exist. Its focus on internet applications, and the dependance on the cloud by the consumer for daily computing tasks does mark a paradigm shift in personal computer use.
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With the weight of Google behind the operating system, it is expected to become a popular option for casual computer users. It will be able to find a niche inside of the currently explosive global netbook market.
Especially given recent economic conditions, sales of the diminutive machines have skyrocketed, accelerating PC shipments around the world. In fact, netbooks have become a second computer to many PC owners who before had tended to stick to a single desktop or laptop.
Chrome OS is a different model from what the current market has to offer, and given its differences, it is hard to see where it fits into an enterprise field. With little to no physical storage, and a focus on internet use, it seems unlikely that security focused IT departments will be quick to assign them to employees.
It is unclear at the moment if eventual enterprise edition will feature a tool-set to allow for the machines to be locked down. If it does not, we will be surprised. More when we have it.