Google recently announced the launch of their “Chrome OS“. The Linux-based desktop has been available for at least a year (codename) but for now Google considers it an “Operating System” and according to their marketing machine it will “eat the PC, destroy Microsoft and make every other OS meaningless”. The press love a good story about the world’s Number One brand taking on Microsoft.
Will this effect the exponential growth of Ubuntu, the worlds most popular Linux distribution? I think not. More likely, Google Chrome will become just another desktop variant of Ubuntu and it is Ubuntu which is swallowing all other Linux distros, as the original Gnu-Hurd strategy unfurls. As far as real world computing goes, Ubuntu has the better metaphor. The Ubuntu default Gnome desktop however, is far from being the better desktop. Competition in the Desktop environment has thankfully hotted up over the past months, so users can expect great advances in usability as well as Internet connectivity.
In fact 2009 could turn out to be the Year of the OS and 2010 the Year of the Desktop as Microsoft unveils Windows 7 and Ubuntu Karmic Koala hits the streets, now Google Chrome is also vying for our attention, alongside at least 20 other Linux-based desktops and 250 associated Linux “Operating systems”.