Google OS: netbook manufacturers respond

Google announces first 'official' Chrome OS partners
Google announces first 'official' Chrome OS partners

Pretty much all the major netbook manufacturers have already declared their support for Google's new Chrome operating system, due for release to consumers at some point later in 2010.

Google has already named Acer, Adobe, ASUS, Freescale, Hewlett-Packard, Lenovo, Qualcomm, and Texas Instruments as official Chrome OS partners on its latest update on the Google blog.

Adobe's support means that Chrome OS will support Flash and the support of major netbook brands such as Acer is to be expected.

Other major brands such as Dell are still to 'officially' give support to Chrome OS, though considering that Dell already use Ubuntu on their Mini 10 Netbooks after all, a Dell PR rep did tell TechRadar this week that, in relation to Google's new OS plans:

"Dell constantly assesses new technologies as part of managing our product development process and for consideration in future products."

Which, while being vague, does give an indication of where Dell's position may be.

MSI backs Google

Richard Stewart, UK Marketing Manager for the leading netbook brand MSI was a little more explicit about his company's support for Google Chrome OS, telling TechRadar:

"MSI have been using Google Chrome browser and Android mobile platform inside our R&D facilities for a short time now. We are as ever excited to see developments in OS software and always strive to offer our customers something different."

The MSI man added: " We try to differentiate our products on both hardware, with unique features like ECO Mode and Turbo Modes that will speed up our product and extend the battery life respectively, and software - having offered Linux models at launch on our Wind U100.

"When the Google Chrome OS becomes a real option for users and if we see a demand from the market, then MSI will always try to offer something interesting and what our customers demand."

Eee PC to run Chrome OS

The other major netbook brand and, arguably, the company that kicked off the modern-day craze for mini-computers, Asus is also clearly behind Google's OS plans.

"ASUS has long-term relationships with many partners in the industry and the ASUS R&D team is always involved with the latest technology developments," said Asus' UK Marketing Director, John Swatton, when asked about the impact Google Chrome OS might have on the netbook market.

"ASUS will officially announce new products when they are mature and ready for manufacture, with clear production plans," Swatton added.

"I can't comment on specific announcements made by individual companies, but any development that encourages manufacturers to continue to drive product innovation has to be good news for the customer."

"2010 is some way off and a lot can change in the IT industry over 12 months," he continued. "Personally I think it's exciting and I'll be watching developments closely."

Adam Hartley