Google announces new operating system based on Chrome

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chrome_logo_highesGoogle has announced today what is seen to finally set itself as a major rival to Microsoft on all platforms, and not only in the mobile, search advertising, and in internet browsers; as it will be developing its very own, open source ooperating system.

Set to launch at the second half of 2010, the new operating system will be based on the Chrome browser, and is focused on netbooks. “It’s our attempt to re-think what operating systems should be,” Google wrote in a blog post announcing its new product.

Like Google Chrome, it will be entirely open source (Google’s open source counterpart is called Chromium), and it is set to focus on speed, simplicity and security – the three core points which are also focused on Chrome. It is also built to be lightweight, and compatible on both x86 and ARM chips. Google has also been quick to point out that this project will be separate from its Android OS, a mobile operating system to compete with Windows Mobile and the Apple iPhone OS.

“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,” the company wrote.

The OS user interface is said to be “minimal to stay out of your way, and most of the user experience takes place on the web”. while security is focused on “going back to 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.”

But at its core, the operating system will be running on top of the Linux kernel. But for developers, they won’t have to touch the Linux kernel to develop applications, as the platform will be based around the Web; and with Chrome set to support HTML5, it will allow developers to create applications with video and audio without the need of using Flash or other plugins.

The Google App Engine, which has been written in Python and Java, is also expected to play a pivotal role in developing applications for the new OS, as Google runs its own cloud server to host the data. Other expectations include Google Wave, a Google app (still in the developing stages) where it merges chat, e-mail and document collaboration.

Google is under negotiations to get partners for the project, and has said to get OEMs on board to market the new operating system within next year. But the only key thing is – will you switch from Windows/Mac OS X to this new OS?