Google is bringing Windows and Microsoft Office to Chrome OS

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Chrome OS devices could soon get full support for some of Microsoft's most popular programs thanks to a new partnership revealed by Google .

The online giant has teamed up with virtualisation experts Parallels, well-known for their expertise in helping Mac users run Windows installs, in order to enable much the same functions on Chrome OS devices.

The new offerings, which include the full Microsoft Office suite should begin rolling out later this year, with Parallels saying a Fall 2020 date is in the calendar.

Windows on ChromeOS

The partnership will bring full Windows apps to Chrome enterprise devices such as laptops and Chromebooks, helping benefit enterprise workers both working at home and in the office.

But it will also help businesses looking to consolidate their various legacy software use, especially across workers using Windows, Mac and now ChromeOS devices. Microsoft has sunk huge amounts of investment into making its software ideal for collaboration and productivity, especially with many employees forecast to continue working from home even when lockdowns across the world come to an end.

Google will be hoping the announcement makes ChromeOS a more appealing choice for businesses of all sizes. Existing low-cost Chromebook devices have proved incredibly popular across the education sector, with schools and universities alike benefiting from low prices and solid hardware specs. 

"Remote work is a new reality, making efficiency, connectivity, speed, reliability, security and undisrupted access essential elements of a successful organization," Parallels wrote in a blog post announcing the news. 

"At this key moment, our two organizations have formed a landmark partnership to equip enterprises with solutions that optimize their businesses and teams to meet the evolving challenges of modern work environments.

Mike Moore
Deputy Editor, TechRadar Pro

Mike Moore is Deputy Editor at TechRadar Pro. He has worked as a B2B and B2C tech journalist for nearly a decade, including at one of the UK's leading national newspapers and fellow Future title ITProPortal, and when he's not keeping track of all the latest enterprise and workplace trends, can most likely be found watching, following or taking part in some kind of sport.