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Microsoft, Other Rivals Slam Google Chrome OS 324

Posted by timothy
from the obligatory-naysaying dept.
CWmike writes "Microsoft is, predictably, not all that impressed by Google Inc.'s demonstration of its upcoming Chrome OS. 'From what was shared, it appears to be in the early stages of development,' a Microsoft spokeswoman said. 'From our perspective, however, our customers are already voicing their approval of the way Windows 7 just works — across the Web and on the desktop, and on all sizes and types of PCs — purchasing twice as many units of Windows 7 as we've sold of any other operating system over a comparable time.' But neither were potential rivals who make Linux and instant-on operating systems. Chrome OS claimed 7-second boot times and the ability to run Web apps within another 3 seconds, which failed to impress Woody Hobbs, president and CEO of Phoenix Technologies, a long-time BIOS software maker that has re-invented itself with a Linux-based instant-on OS called HyperSpace. 'Instant-on is about being able to access your Internet applications in one second. Seven seconds is too long,' Hobbs said. 'There is no such thing as "cold boot" for today's mobile PCs such as netbooks and smartbooks. You should be able to use your netbook like you use your smartphone — a press of a button and you are "on."' Mark Lee, CEO of DeviceVM Inc., said Google's favoritism towards its own browser and Web apps could rub some users the wrong way, especially those outside of the US. 'In China, users prefer Baidu, not Google,' Lee said. DeviceVM's Splashtop platform boots into Firefox within seconds and uses Yahoo or Baidu as default search engines instead of Google."
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Microsoft, Other Rivals Slam Google Chrome OS

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  • Dang! (Score:5, Funny)

    by symbolset (646467) on Saturday November 21, 2009 @05:43PM (#30188136) Journal

    I was already contrarian in yesterday's Chrome thread. Some people are asking "Does Chrome OS Spell the End of Desktop PCs?" [pcmag.com] I think the thing that's in the most danger of being taken over by Chrome OS is slashdot. Some people will make some interesting builds, and it will be a lot of fun to play with. It's doubtful much more will come of it than that.

    But of course Microsoft and their friends at Forrester and Gartner, PC World and news.com.com.com will be declaring it a greater threat to world peace than Scientology, claim it causes genital warts, say that it may damage both your computer and your self esteem. The funniest thing I've seen along this line is this one [wired.com].

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by MichaelSmith (789609)

      There is this automated internet kiosk system you can use here. You put a coin in the slot then it netboots windows. Its all memory resident so nothing gets preserved between sessions.

      I wonder if google could provide a BOOTP service for Chrome OS? That way you wouldn't actually need to keep it installed.

      Might have been easier if the image was smaller than 300 megabytes.

      • Re:Dang! (Score:4, Interesting)

        by miffo.swe (547642) <daniel.hedblom @ g m a i l .com> on Saturday November 21, 2009 @07:09PM (#30188926) Homepage Journal

        That would actually not be hard at all for anyone. Since Chrome OS is open source you can do it today thanks to gpxe. The only problem would be getting the right answer out of your local dhcp like this:

        chain http://chrome.google.com/chromeos.gpxe [google.com]

        That could be solved by booting with an usb stick instead. The drawback would be how you verify its really Google youre downloading the system image from and not some random dns injecting hacker. I just got to try this, thanks for the idea!

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by 3vi1 (544505)

        I think you're confusing what BOOTP actually does and who provides it. It could be used to perform the first step - return the location of a boot image while you're acquiring an address, but it's been replaced by DHCP (which can do the same thing for providing the image's location) in the modern world. You can't really use BOOTP/DHCP servers outside your network, unless you want to partner with them to give Google complete control over your address space and configure helper-addresses pointing to their DH

    • by b4upoo (166390)

      I am quite certain that Chrome will make a huge impression on Microsoft. Let the whining and bleeding begin!

    • by ivoras (455934)

      To get on the comment-your-ass-about-something-you-can't-possibly-change bandwagon - what *is* a shame in all this is that ChromeOS wasn't developed *earlier*. Atom based netbooks are already too slow for anything *but* web surfing. Ana a few bucks could be shaved by dropping the HDD. Other things could be minimized too - 1 GB RAM is actually OK if all the machine does is being a thin-ish web client, maybe 512 MB could also be enough. A SD slot would of course be useful. The video system doesn't have to be

      • Re:Dang! (Score:5, Insightful)

        by jo42 (227475) on Saturday November 21, 2009 @08:19PM (#30189418) Homepage

        Atom based netbooks are already too slow for anything *but* web surfing

        Horse cow pie poopies!!! A Dell Mini 10v with 2GB RAM and 320GB 7200RPM HD running Photoshop CS4 under Mac OS X 10.6.2 is a little bit more than "anything *but* web surfing". Lest you still wet behind the ears 20-somethings have forgotten that today's Netbook is just as powerful as a several year old desktop (or laptop!) that was used to run things like Photoshop, Autocad, Quark, Office, Eclipse and many other real world productivity applications.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          I'll point out one thing that you are indirectly stating - people aren't buying netbooks as netbooks. They're buying netbooks as cheap notebooks or sub-notebooks. That's why Linux netbooks are really failing, and why Windows XP Home did so well when Microsoft started selling it for use on netbooks. And why Chrome OS won't help. They're selling to people who want a cheap computer, not a netbook as a concept. They actually do want (or need) to run their own applications.

          Netbook video - 1024x600 sucks. Anythin

      • Re:Dang! (Score:4, Interesting)

        by Blakey Rat (99501) on Saturday November 21, 2009 @09:18PM (#30189852)

        Atom based netbooks are already too slow for anything *but* web surfing

        Ever actually use one?

        My Windows 7 netbook has no problem playing full-screen MP4 video, that's a bit more hardcore than web surfing. Of course, you can find websites now that do full-screen HD video, so I guess maybe that falls under the definition of "web surfing."

        Frankly, the Atom CPU is about 5 times faster than my first Windows XP PC. And I did a hell of a lot with that.

  • purchasing twice as many units of Windows 7 as we've sold of any other operating system over a comparable time.

    Remember to halve any sales figures that Microsoft releases due to how they constantly misrepresent and mis-measure their actual sales.

    • by future assassin (639396) on Saturday November 21, 2009 @05:56PM (#30188268) Homepage

      purchasing twice as many units of Windows 7 as we've sold of any other operating system over a comparable time.

      So right here MS themselves admits that VISTA was such crap that people were flocking away from it at record times.

    • If you half the sales of all their OSes, you end up with the same ratios.
    • by MightyYar (622222)

      Remember to halve any sales figures that Microsoft releases due to how they constantly misrepresent and mis-measure their actual sales.

      I don't think they need to here. Vista was a relative flop, and XP was released in 2001... the PC market has increased enormously in size since then. The success of Windows 7 isn't really in doubt anyway - people have clung to XP, so there is pent up demand for anything even remotely as usable.

  • by MBCook (132727) <foobarsoft@foobarsoft.com> on Saturday November 21, 2009 @05:55PM (#30188248) Homepage

    They are competing directly, but Google's friendlier. Google is making an appliance OS, where as SplashTop is designed as a light fast-booting OS.

    But almost everyone is using a strawman (as Microsoft is). The point is not to replace Windows, it's an OS for web surfing. It's not for playing World of Warcraft, doing heavy photo editing, video editing, etc. Everyone is writing the "Google vs. Microsoft" article they want to write, instead of the tougher article about how Google is basically working to define a new class of computer (something of a netbook that's not running a general OS).

    It's web-TV, but not on TV and not horrible. It's an email appliance OS that lets you read the web pages people link to in their emails.

    It's not a direct shot at MS and Apple.

    Gruber [daringfireball.net] gets another one right.

    • ...For now. (Score:5, Interesting)

      by KingSkippus (799657) on Saturday November 21, 2009 @06:23PM (#30188500) Homepage Journal

      Anyone who thinks that once Google perfects this, they're going to be content to simply sit idle on the cloudbook (I'm making that word up; consider it public domain) market with it is fooling themselves.

      Google is also working on implementing 3D [slashdot.org] in the browser. They're also saying that for most features users use, Google Apps will be caught up with Microsoft Office [cnet.com] in a year. They're also working VERY hard on developing a standard codebase to implement a desktop UI within a browser [google.com], and they're making very good progress.

      Is Google overly optimistic? Maybe, but what company isn't? My point, though, is that they've got a LOT of really good things going for them. Don't dare think of Chrome as forever relegated to "OS-lite," or else you'll be making the same fundamental mistake that many other companies have made with Google. (And indeed, that a lot of them made with Microsoft in the past. "Oh, Internet Explorer will never catch up to Netscape." "Excel is like a scaled-down Lotus 123." "Our company has invested way too much in Netware to change." "Visual C++ is neat, but for serious development, go with Borland.")

      It's really kind of fun to watch a company out-Microsoft Microsoft, except in a good way. As far as I'm concerned, I hope Microsoft continues to think of ChromeOS as just a toy that will never be a serious contender with Windows outside of very limited niche devices.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        As far as I'm concerned, I hope Microsoft continues to think of ChromeOS as just a toy that will never be a serious contender with Windows outside of very limited niche devices.

        They'll consider it a competitor as soon as its market share proportion has at least one significant digit to the left of the decimal point. Just look what happened to Linux!

        It's a toy until it starts taking up significant portions of Microsoft's client-side OS market share.

        • Re:...For now. (Score:4, Insightful)

          by DJRumpy (1345787) on Saturday November 21, 2009 @09:27PM (#30189922)

          Not so. Ballmer still refers to Apple as a rounding error. They already have significants digit(s) to the left of the decimal. MS has blinders on lately, and the dogs are past nipping on their heels. They are biting their ankles. Get enough dogs, and they can bring down any big animal.

          Not a good year for Microsoft.

          • When Steve Ballmer dismisses Apple it is really like a kid who pulls the cover over his head and repeats over and over "there are no monsters under the bed, there are no monsters under the bed".

            And he is right. Steve Jobs is in the closet.

      • Re:...For now. (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Dysphoric1 (1641793) on Saturday November 21, 2009 @09:15PM (#30189820)

        watch a company out-Microsoft Microsoft

        Which is why I don't use Google or any of their products and hopefully never will. Google is setting itself up to be as big or an even bigger threat than Microsoft has been to our freedom.

        They are trying to monopolize internet communication itself. They are trying to control both the content and the interface by which you access it. They have their hands in e-books, internet videos, cellphones, operating systems, search, advertising, e-mail, applications, browsers, computer hardware and much more. They may not succeed, but there is no doubt they are trying.

        They may be beneficent now, but most corporations have an authoritarian hierarchy and all it will take is a change of leadership for things to change and I, for one, don't want anyone having that much power in their eventually corrupted hands.

        It may seem wise to some that the enemy (Google) of their enemy (Microsoft) is their friend, but history has shown that most revolutions wind up just instituting a different authoritarian regime of their own, despite their best intentions. I hope I'm wrong, but I would very wary of what Google has the potential to become in the future.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by CodeBuster (516420)

        I hope Microsoft continues to think of ChromeOS as just a toy that will never be a serious contender with Windows outside of very limited niche devices.

        As other posters have already pointed out, Microsoft (and others) are probably right about it never being a serious competitor to Windows, Linux, or indeed any other "full" operating system; but then again it isn't trying to be serious contender to full service operating systems. This is not to say that Google couldn't convert chrome into one, but what would be the point? If they were going to do that then why not just build or sponsor their own general purpose Linux distribution? Why re-invent the wheel? G

    • The point is not to replace Windows, it's an OS for web surfing. It's not for playing World of Warcraft, doing heavy photo editing, video editing, etc.

      It's not a popular idea here in Geekdom, but many people think Web applications *are* the future...

    • by RAMMS+EIN (578166) on Saturday November 21, 2009 @06:39PM (#30188630) Homepage Journal

      ``It's an email appliance OS that lets you read the web pages people link to in their emails.''

      In other words, it's exactly what mom and pop need. Especially if someone can make it work without needing a security expert to keep it working.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by VGPowerlord (621254)

        I don't know about your mom and pop, but mine also do finances/checkbook balancing, keep track of medical information, play games, all in addition to doing web and email.

        Most of those they want to keep off the cloud.

      • by notaprguy (906128) * on Saturday November 21, 2009 @09:34PM (#30189974) Journal
        Not really. My mom and pop - aged 79 and 76 - use Microsoft Word and Excel, Quicken, Turbo Tax and Photoshop Elements and several other PC applications. Yes, there are Web-based versions of most of those products but they don't work as well and only work when online (still). A relatively small number of wealthier people will buy Chrome OS devices as a 2nd, 3rd or 4th machine but they'll continue to use PC's and Macs for everything else.
    • by quickOnTheUptake (1450889) on Saturday November 21, 2009 @06:42PM (#30188656)
      I think this take on it is too short-sighted. MS's business model is based on native applications. They want people mainly using outlook to read their mail. They want people editing documents in Word.
      Google's business strategy is to get people spending as much time in a browser as possible. They want to replace all those native apps with Web apps that run on any machine with a browser and network connection.
      These are two very different models. MS makes loads of money on Office. And it makes considerable money on Windows (which you need to run lots of your non-MS native software). If people start replacing Office with GDocs, MS loses a lot of money. If people stop relying on Windows-only apps to the point that they will seriously consider a well done, manufacturer customized , free OS, MS losses even more.
      Chrome OS is one more little step towards Google's goal. If you are using GDocs and Gmail on Chrome, odds are not slim you are going to just stop using Office and Outlook altogether, even on your main desktop. After all, your stuff if already in Google docs.
      But the big picture is 10 years down the road. If MS lets this sort of computer experience catch on, if it gives Google a chance to develop compelling replacements for standard apps, ones that run just as well on a free OS on cheap ARM hardware, in 10 years they may need a very different buisness model than the one that has treated them so well for the last 20.
      • by MBCook (132727)

        I agree with you and the other commenters that Google will push this. They may add some bits, and they'll make (or encourage others to make) web applications that can fill most people's needs. There is even 3D bindings so relatively simple games could run (and with WoW's 2004 era graphics, it may qualify too).

        But that's the future. Google isn't pushing this for everyone for every purpose today, they're pushing it for this purpose. They want to grow up into a larger market (like x86), instead of taking the

      • A lot of people may not remember this right now, but Chrome OS is the embodiment of what .net was actually supposed to be. Dot Net was the wave of the future, where all applications lived on the internet. It was supposed to be the cloud before the term cloud even existed.

        Then Microsoft apparently never figured out how to do it, and .net ended up just being a moderately cool API, with this really weird combined runtime system.

        Now I imagine there are people at Microsoft who are saying, "if only we had d
    • by tomhudson (43916) <barbara.hudson@D ... com minus painte> on Saturday November 21, 2009 @06:59PM (#30188822) Journal

      The point is not to replace Windows, it's an OS for web surfing.

      Not really. People will buy a crippleware smartphone for that before they'll spend money on a crippleware computer. don't have to buy a separate keyboard, mouse or screen, portable, always-on, can run local apps instead of downloading everything off the web every time, apps work offline, more local storage, can make phone calls, videos, etc., and just way more cool.

      And the only people who will look at this are people too cheap to buy even a crappy $200 netbook or a smartphone. No advertiser is going to pay for clicks from them, so forget about subsidizing these boxes with revenue from search.

      Business won't want it because there's some data you just don't share, not to mention desktop clutter and more time wasted synching.

      This product is at least 3 years too late (and will be 4 years too late when it finally rolls out), and aims at a market nobody can make money with.

      • by MBCook (132727) <foobarsoft@foobarsoft.com> on Saturday November 21, 2009 @07:53PM (#30189234) Homepage

        I can see a large market for this. It would be perfect for my Grandfather. He doesn't need photo editing or video capture. If he can turn the font size up, it would work great.

        Best of all, no maintenance, nothing to install, nothing to configure and fiddle with, just an appliance. People already try to use computers like that, why shouldn't Google make that possible?

        The netbook market is two markets squished into one. One is the cheap low power computer market (these things), and the other is the tiny market (something else). Windows is very heavy for just a little thing to surf. If you want a real laptop a tiny higher end netbook ($400-$500) is going to have the horsepower to be able to actually work well.

      • by icebraining (1313345) on Saturday November 21, 2009 @08:16PM (#30189392) Homepage

        don't have to buy a separate keyboard, mouse or screen, portable

        ChromeOS is obviously intended for netbooks, which already have that.

        always-on

        One of the main features of ARM CPUs is the low energy usage. Combined with auto-suspend when not in use, and it can get full days of autonomy.

        can run local apps instead of downloading everything off the web every time, apps work offline

        http://gears.google.com/ [google.com]

        more local storage

        Current SSD based netbooks don't have much storage space, and yet have been selling nicely.

        can make phone calls, videos

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Google_Voice [wikipedia.org]

    • by reub2000 (705806)
      I think moblin had the right idea. The interface is primarily designed around a browser, one that is efficient with screen space on a 10 inch screen, but can still run most linux apps. Boot time isn't quite 7 seconds, but I can pull my phone out of my pocket for faster access to my e-mail.
  • by 93 Escort Wagon (326346) on Saturday November 21, 2009 @05:56PM (#30188266)

    You know, my first thought when I read "seven seconds is too long" was "you've got to be kidding" - but then I remembered how some of the people we support (academic faculty) have wasted hours of our time with complaints when their IMAP email messages were taking four seconds to open on one particular day instead of the usual one second... (and yes, that was a verbatim complaint).

    • "Yeah thanks we know." (click)

      The new Amiga OS 4.1 build loads in just 5 seconds (10 seconds on an older, slower HDD). Maybe they ought to port that over to Intel and compete directly against Microsoft and Google. Shutdown time ix 0. (just flip the power switch off)

    • It's actually why I've got ThunderBird's RSS thing set to only ever show me the summaries, and I click on from there, instead of loading the full article. It's far easier for me to click through each item I'm interested in, opening them in FireFox, -then- going on to read them (each article is then already loaded), then it is for me to click one item, wait for it to display in ThunderBird, read it, click the next, wait again, etc.

      The only real difference is that 'wait'.. and yes, it's only 2-4 seconds - bu

    • It does amaze me how many people will waste twenty minutes complaining about a problem that is slowing them down by a few seconds. This happens at my company all the time.

      Even better is when it really is a system issue so the support lines get jammed with hundreds of people calling to complain about it, even though we put messages on our queue indicating that we already know. Then they waste further time complaining about how long they had to wait on hold to complain about the problem we already said
    • Re:"instant on" (Score:4, Interesting)

      by strikethree (811449) on Sunday November 22, 2009 @07:35AM (#30192422) Journal

      You know, my first thought when I read "seven seconds is too long" was "you've got to be kidding"

      Well, I would say that they are NOT kidding. To be honest, I am getting quite weary of buying upgraded processors and more RAM so I can finally, at last, get instant response... and what happens? Some jackass comes along and says, "programmer time is more important than CPU time. Let's use layers and layers of crap to reduce programmer time. Nobody will ever notice since CPUs will always become faster to hide the slowness."

      Well, you know what? Screw you. I am wasting some mod points to respond to this, but yeah. Your mail server should have responded within a second. In a LAN, if a packet takes more than 10 milliseconds to get there, your network is poor. Your CPU should have been able to handle the network packets, decoded the IMAP request, etc within 40 milliseconds. Seriously, a millisecond is a HUGE amount of time for a modern CPU. So, we have 60 milliseconds total in which your mail server should have responded. Why didn't it?

      strike

  • I haven't seen a recent smartphone that is on (and I don't mean, "displays something", I mean "fully usable") within 7 seconds. Even if you factor out the ID number input, 7 seconds is not too far fetched for current phones, overcramped with "features".

    • by Stone316 (629009)

      Me either... Everytime I go to use my blackberry its usually rebooting...

    • by nxtw (866177)

      I haven't seen a recent smartphone that is on (and I don't mean, "displays something", I mean "fully usable") within 7 seconds. Even if you factor out the ID number input, 7 seconds is not too far fetched for current phones, overcramped with "features".

      How often do people reboot their phones? My BlackBerry's uptime is about 13 months; I've rebooted it once since I got in 2008.

  • Just works? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by whoever57 (658626) on Saturday November 21, 2009 @05:57PM (#30188274) Journal

    Windows 7 just works -- across the Web and on the desktop, and on all sizes and types of PCs

    And it "just works" on ARM processors? So "PC" should really be "x86-based PC".

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Bacon Bits (926911)

      So "PC" should really be "x86-based PC".

      So, all those people wanting to run Windows 7 on a SheevaPlug/NSLU2 or wireless router will be so upset?

      Really, SlashDot? Really?

    • Re:Just works? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by int69h (60728) on Saturday November 21, 2009 @07:22PM (#30189042)

      PC has been accepted as meaning "an x86 personal computer generally running dos or one of its successors" for roughly 30 years now. Bitch all you want, but you're not going to change things.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward

        PC has been accepted as meaning "an x86 personal computer generally running dos or one of its successors" for roughly 30 years now. Bitch all you want, but you're not going to change things.

        So if "PC" means: "something Windows can run on", then saying that Windows 7 runs on "all sizes and types of PCs" is a rather meaningless statement.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      Naturally. PC is shorthand for "IBM PC-compatible computer" which by design was an x86.

    • And it "just works" on ARM processors? So "PC" should really be "x86-based PC".

      No, but Windows CE 6 "just works" on ARM processors. Of course, it can't run the same apps that Windows 7 can.

      Then again, ChromeOS runs exactly 0 applications other than Chrome itself, so that comparison is moot.

  • by Weaselmancer (533834) on Saturday November 21, 2009 @05:58PM (#30188286)

    'From what was shared, it appears to be in the early stages of development,' a Microsoft spokeswoman said.

    Thanks for the advice but it's not a problem - I never buy any software from Google until the third release.

  • by Ian Alexander (997430) on Saturday November 21, 2009 @05:58PM (#30188288)
    The reason your customers won't be interested in Chrome OS as a replacement for 7 is the same reason pickup-truck drivers aren't interested in motorcycles as replacements.

    It's scratching a different itch, although I'm a little skeptical that anyone's seriously itching hard for a minimal OS capable of running only a web browser.
    • by Huntr (951770)

      It's scratching a different itch, although I'm a little skeptical that anyone's seriously itching hard for a minimal OS capable of running only a web browser.

      Sounds like the perfect system for my grandma and anyone else who likes their computer, but mainly uses it for web, email, an occasional doc or spreadsheet, and organizing photos.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by rliden (1473185)

      I think you hit the nail on the head. Google is solving a problem that doesn't exist. I have yet to hear anyone ask to do all their computing through a web browser.

      I love Chrome. It's my browser of choice most of the time. I'm a Google account/services user. I do think they provide an excellent web experience. I don't see them providing the same experience for my desktop as they do for the web. I guess we'll see how this unfolds though. Something tells me there is more to this than we're seeing.

      • by quarterbuck (1268694) on Sunday November 22, 2009 @12:27AM (#30190924)
        Actually I have found google's products amazingly useful
        At a place where I used to consult, they use a Bloomberg machine to get financial data. Then they export it out to excel and then from there to either 3rd party toolkits or write macros in excel to analyze it. It was often a problem that data was not always up-to-date or that two versions were over written. (It's a finance firm, and they like excel to look at data. Obviously, no source control either)

        Turns out Google can do the whole thing for you.Google Finance has the data, which you can pull into google docs using functions and then you can write functions to generate results. It does not have macros, but you can get pretty close using standard functions. Best part is that the data is always automatically updated since the whole thing is "on the cloud". The cost savings on Bloomberg ($20 K per year), Excel (~$100 /year), computer +Electricity (~600 /year), a human being to keep data updated/versioned ($10 K /year for the task) - is enormous.
    • It's not for you (Score:3, Insightful)

      by copponex (13876)

      It's for your friends and relatives who drive you mad with tech support questions. Send them a $100 box, tell them to switch the cables out, and get on with your life.

  • High praise! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by MrMista_B (891430) on Saturday November 21, 2009 @06:01PM (#30188314)

    If they're all so scared enough to give it this much attention, it /must/ be good.

    • Or... they were interviewed via email, and they responded to the question appropriately. Other OS makers aren't the ones giving it attention, it's Computerworld/Wired/etc that want this story to exist. And everybody eats it up, as evidenced here.
  • by jamesh (87723) on Saturday November 21, 2009 @06:06PM (#30188364)

    smartphone — a press of a button and you are "on."'

    I don't know what smartphones they are referring to. My iPhone and my laptop are seldom 'off'. They both go into standby when i'm not using them, the times to come out of standby are very similar, and if I actually had to type a password into my iPhone to bring it out of standby the computer would beat it by far.

    Has Mr Hobbs never turned a smartphone on from a complete off state? There is a negligible difference between booting my iPhone vs my Windows XP laptop. My old HP iPaq wasn't much different.

  • The companies that will take a direct hit when Chrome OS gets released commented that it will be bad. Amazing.

    Anyway, there were some constructive comments. Saying that they should improve and boot in a second instead of 7, as they are actually doing, sounds to me like positive feedback. And if google or the community can't make boot Chrome as fast because of design choices, would be nice to have HyperSpace or SplashTop in normal computers/notebooks and chrome in specialized netbooks, the market is wide eno
  • 'From what was shared, it appears to be in the early stages of development,' a Microsoft spokeswoman said. 'From our perspective, however, our customers are already voicing their approval of the way Windows 7 just works -- across the Web and on the desktop, and on all sizes and types of PCs -- purchasing twice as many units of Windows 7 as we've sold of any other operating system over a comparable time.'

    Sounds like the typical politician in a debate. Half a meaningless thought on the actual topic followed b

    • Sounds like the typical politician in a debate. Half a meaningless thought on the actual topic followed by a string of promotional sound bites for the product they're selling.

      I think you got it backwards. It's the politicians who have adopted PR strategy, not so much the other way around.

  • The point (Score:2, Interesting)

    by bonch (38532)

    I just don't get the point. Everything Chrome OS runs can already be run by any other OS, so why not just use some other Linux distro that's not restricted to web apps?

    • by couchslug (175151)

      "I just don't get the point. Everything Chrome OS runs can already be run by any other OS, so why not just use some other Linux distro that's not restricted to web apps?"

      Browser appliances have always been wonderful if one asks those whose business model relies on them. :)

  • by Linegod (9952) <pasnak.warpedsystems@sk@ca> on Saturday November 21, 2009 @06:16PM (#30188448) Homepage Journal

    Tech blogs have been extrapolating from minor leaks ands rumours, generating the 'perfect' OS in their minds. When Google released what they think is going fill a niche - a smartphone on steroids - the tech blogs where crushed. Microsoft steps in to assure them that they will continue to have a hype cycle to satisfy their lust for ad revenue, and all is well in the Techblogosphere.

    In three or four years, when you can only get Chrome OS on a netbook, the geeks will turn against Google as well. It will be the same fight that was fought for the desktop, but this time it will be Ubuntu that that people will say doesn't let you mount a hard drive out of the box, since it is only SSD, which will be too difficult for the 'common user', and the geek culture will implode on itself as it struggles with it's fanatical devotion to a dumbed down Linux and their realization that Google and Canonical are run by the same type of people that cause them constant strife in their underpaid IT jobs.

    Either that, or like when Firefly was canceled, they will just go outside for a week, and wait until they are drawn back in....

    • In three or four years, when you can only get Chrome OS on a netbook, the geeks will turn against Google as well.

      Well, given that there's no point in running it on any other type of computer...

      Hell, even current netbooks have the power to run non-web-applications; we'd almost have to invent a new category lower than netbooks to classify ChromeOS as.

      No, wait, I lied. I forgot to take into account that native applications run faster than web applications, so you'll actually need dual-core netbooks for Chrome

  • by w0mprat (1317953) on Saturday November 21, 2009 @06:19PM (#30188474)
    ... it's part of their paycheck to not be impressed with anything let alone admit it to the media.

    Do they use a press release response form ticking the checkboxes for all the usual lines?

    Oh come on, Chrome is no threat to desktops, because people will still need their rich apps on high-spec hardware, therefore desktops will be still around as a do-everything machine. Partly though, because laptops netbooks and smartphones haven't killed desktops yet. I fear though, Microsoft has for a long time been making Windows a one size fits all requirements OS, the indentical OS gets put on netbooks to top end workstations. Chrome OS will appeal people who just want web and social networking and a bit of mucking around with their digital photos, but previously had to fork out for more than they needed in a laptop and desktop.

    Having played around with the virtual machine images circulating, I don't think it's a threat to anything, but it looks pretty solid for a beta OS, but finally the ideal OS for the focused web tablet we've all been wanting for a long time. I also imagine the code could be rolled into existing linux distributions. It could coexist alongside other desktop environments ie KDE/Gnome, although I don't think Chrubuntu would be a very catch name.

    Oh and it's Linux, open source, if it is lacking any features we will fix it okay?
    • by foobsr (693224)
      I don't think Chrubuntu would be a very catch name

      Goobuntu? Probably not, but is much easier to pronounce.

      CC.
  • I'm not sure what type of phone ol' Woody Hobbs uses... but I think that's kind of a flawed analogy at best. Over the years, my phones from a cold start have taken easily 5 - 10 seconds to post up (...and that includes the gracious amount of Verizon Wireless foo that flashes around at the beginning) Regardless of the pounding Chrome OS is taking, 7 second boot up time with instant access is killer. Really that's not any less/more than my Acer AspireOne + LinuxMint coming back up from hibernation mode. I
    • by RAMMS+EIN (578166)

      ``Regardless of the pounding Chrome OS is taking, 7 second boot up time with instant access is killer.''

      Still, we gotta be able to do better than that.

  • This is the first time I've ever said this, but with the release of Windows 7, Windows "just works". XP had plenty of bugs, Vista drove me to Ubuntu for a few years, and now with Windows 7, I've had very few problems. It's nearly none, but I had to run a few older games in XP compatibility mode and some proxification program didn't work because it lacked a 64 bit driver.

    That said, I'm thinking that Chrome OS will "just work" too, but because it's functionality will be limited and hardware support tight
    • by tomhudson (43916)

      That said, I'm thinking that Chrome OS will "just work" too, but because it's functionality will be limited and hardware support tightly controlled.

      Tivoisation? Cripple(hard)ware? No thanks. I can get better value with a locked-in smartphone.

  • by harlows_monkeys (106428) on Saturday November 21, 2009 @06:26PM (#30188512) Homepage

    Richard Stallman says using cloud apps is stupid.

    On comp.os.linux.advocacy, about the only thing the anti-Linux trolls and the pro-Linux trolls agree on is that they aren't trusting their data to the cloud, so Chrome OS is not impressive to them.

  • This story is posted as though it's surprising that companies would show disapproval towards their competitors products, claiming that their own are superior.

    Can we please not post stories merely for the sake of finding another reason for people to bitch about Microsoft?

  • Uh... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Threni (635302)

    > Seven seconds is too long,' Hobbs said.

    For instant on it is. FOr a quick boot it's ok.

    > There is no such thing as "cold boot" for today's mobile PCs such as netbooks and smartbooks. You should be able to use your netbook like you use your smartphone -- a
    > press of a button and you are "on."' M

    My smartphone (HTC Touch Diamond) is nothing like that. From pressing the reset button (near where the stylus lives) to doing anything is around a minute. 7 seconds would be a massive improvement.

    Does Goo

  • Attack boot time? (Score:5, Informative)

    by RiotingPacifist (1228016) on Saturday November 21, 2009 @06:41PM (#30188650)

    IMO the key selling points for chrome are:

    1) Zero user maintenance

    2) Security (the thing is even resistant against user-space malware), even Linux distros are years away from sand-boxing desktop apps

    3) Simple UI

  • by rmcd (53236) * on Saturday November 21, 2009 @06:42PM (#30188658)

    What people don't get about Google's software is that they are not selling it. That's not where their revenue comes from. They can spend a lot of time getting the software right, refocusing it, tweaking it, getting comments. Microsoft by contrast has to come out with the big "impressive" release every few years to keep the company afloat. That's their business model. It's not Google's.

    Look at Android. 18 months ago the cell phone execs were all saying that Google didn't understand how hard it is to create cellular phone software. The G1 got a lot of yawns. That reception would have been a disaster for Apple, but for Google it didn't matter, they just kept working on it. Today, Android is a serious competitor.

    Whatever Chrome does or doesn't do can be changed. And maybe it will flop. That won't be a huge deal for Google as long as they get their advertising on the next generation of devices.

  • How it works. (Score:2, Insightful)

    by lattyware (934246)
    Looks interesting => We don't give a shit.
    Looks bad => Oh shit, we are screwed.
  • What if? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by miffo.swe (547642)

    What if someone successfully develops something like a cloud service with Wine+NX and lets you run any and all Windows apps out in the cloud? If they get an acceptable framerate out of it that should put most "but my application X dont work" to shame. The only problem i can see is doing that through the browser and get fast enough framerates for games.

    Im also wondering how much work it would be for Google to later on slap dalvik/android devkit onto the platform for local applications. Probably not that much

  • You should be able to use your netbook like you use your smartphone — a press of a button and you are "on."'

    Maybe Phoenix shouldn't be bashing on Google in that comparison. I *wish* my Windows smart phone booted in 7 seconds. It's more like 30-45. It turns on, displays a retarded 8-second AT&T animated logo, continues booting slowly, pops up and asks for a password (but you have to wait 10-15 seconds before you can actually type because Windows is still loading), and then finally you're at your phone desktop. ...except none of the buttons work for another 10 seconds while even more crap loads.

    Phoenix ha

  • by hattig (47930) on Saturday November 21, 2009 @07:09PM (#30188930) Journal

    Microsoft aren't considering:

    1) ARM version of Chrome OS - means $199 smartbooks instead of $299-$499 netbooks running Windows XP or Windows 7.

    2) OS is free.

    3) Actually Google might be offering a share of advertising revenue to manufacturers, as with Android. This means that the OS has a negative cost. We could see $149 smartbooks. Who is interested in a Windows 7 netbook at 3x the cost then?

    4) Good enough for a second/cloud computer. Especially if it supports the "home cloud" with support for DNLA (media streaming) and other common home/office services.

    However there are failings - firstly I think that Google need to make the OS Android compatible. I.e., installing the Dalvik VM and Android APIs by default. Android 2 allows higher resolutions. Android 3 will surely support resolutions up to smartbook (1024x600, 1366x768) and running an app as a tab within Chrome OS, allowing a unified platform. Surely therefore Chrome OS smartbooks will include multitouch displays...

    Also Chrome OS 1 will surely be rough, like Android 1 and the G1. Droid is showing what Android 2 can do, and it's far more mature. Android 3 will probably be the first all-rounded and sweetly remembered variant. Android 4 will be good too. Android 5 through 7 will be dire.

  • by TxRv (1662461) on Saturday November 21, 2009 @07:33PM (#30189138)
    even in Virtualbox. The rest is rather disappointing though. It's just a full screen web-browser and nothing else. If you want more than that you'd be better off with Ubuntu Netbook Remix or another mini Linux distro. I would have much preferred a stable Linux build of the Google Chrome browser.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Joseph Lam (61951)

      If you want more than that you'd be better off with Ubuntu Netbook Remix or another mini Linux distro. I would have much preferred a stable Linux build of the Google Chrome browser.

      As you've already said there are better solutions for people who need more. Google is providing something optimized for those who DON'T need more.

  • 'There is no such thing as "cold boot" for today's mobile PCs such as netbooks and smartbooks. You should be able to use your netbook like you use your smartphone — a press of a button and you are "on."'

    Cold booting a phone will not load in less than 7 seconds or will certainly take more than 10 seconds. Comparing a phone would be like comparing the Chrome OS coming out of hibernate and he is assuming that time is the same as a cold boot.

    Not that it really matters, the 3G (or less) connection is the slowest part of smartphone computing and Chrome OS will unfortunately run into this problem as well.

  • "just works"? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by jipn4 (1367823) on Sunday November 22, 2009 @02:19AM (#30191432)

    their approval of the way Windows 7 just works

    So, Microsoft is now imitating Apple's moniker. Of course, it's b.s. from both Microsoft and Apple: when you buy their systems, you get an OS and a bunch of accessory applications. You then need to install the application software you actually want to use. And then you can get ready for being pestered constantly by applications that want to update themselves, security warnings, and all that other crap that comes with desktop OSes.

The unfacts, did we have them, are too imprecisely few to warrant our certitude.

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