Google held the Chrome OS event this past Thursday and I’ll admit I was excited.  Excited to see what Google would bring to the table and how game changing it would be.  However, while my excitement is there (mainly due to the inner geek still wanting to try it), I’m a little disappointed with what was announced at the event.

My disappointment doesn’t really stem at the fact that Android apps won’t be supported, or that you can only purchase a new computer (netbook only) with Chrome OS, or that it won’t be supporting desktop applications (so it is truly web based).  I mean, those things do bother me a little, but overall, I’m disappointed about something else Google didn’t do which would have made Chrome OS truly perfect based on how they are currently marketing it.

The major pitfall for me is the fact you will require a wireless Internet connection to actually make the OS fully functional.  Even with Google Gears installed (which really wasn’t discussed much that I saw, so who knows how well it would work with Chrome OS in the grand scheme) and HTML5 capabilities (which will be more beneficial for offline work), Chrome OS is still limited in terms of usefulness for the user.  However, all of this could have been a non-issue if Google did one little (well, maybe not so little) thing about a year ago.  Can you guess what I’m talking about?  I’ll give you one hint: think of the number 700.

So what am I getting at?  Imagine if Google had gone through the bidding war and actually purchased the rights to the 700Mhz spectrum.  Just think of the marketing and selling power they could put behind Chrome OS.  If they controlled the 700Mhz spectrum, they could make sure WiFi was nation wide.  If WiFi was everywhere, Chrome OS would be ideal.


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Now, granted they were very influential in creating the rules which detail the open access of the spectrum, they still don’t own it – Verizon does.  Verizon already filed a law suit attempting to have the rules dismissed (they lost and eventually dropped the case) so you can see how big they are on the whole “open” thing.

I still think we will have WiFi nation wide at some point, but not soon enough to when they are planning on releasing Chrome OS for it to matter.

  • I do not think google's goal is to wage war with Microsoft and Apple just yet. Google has never been about stealing the market share. They continue to develop services that are easy to use and make computing less stressful. In say five years the Chrome OS might be the one to have because it will fully integrate into our connected lifestyles. Something I doubt Microsoft and Apple will be doing anytime soon.

    Google started as a service that helped people find pages on the web. At the time of its creation it was not really “a big deal”, but look at it now! We use google to find just about everything from entertainment when we are bored to maps of your local town.

    One thing you forgot to mention was that google is working on a completely new protocol to send traffic over the internet that will replace http (hopefully). Not only will this new protocol help eliminate network congestion but it will also give web developers a chance to create some amazing web based applications. More on the protocol here. http://dev.chromium.org/spdy/spdy-whitepaper

    Lastly I doubt we will see nation wide wifi access in our lifetime. Verizon plans to use that 700Mhz spectrum to power their new LTE network. ATT is using an 800Mhz spectrum to do the same. The future I see shows laptops with embedded devices that can connect to this LTE network and access the internet virtually anywhere in the world for a fee. Your laptop will be more like a large cell phone and will be powered by this “not” new but extremely useful web based Chrome OS.

    I am really excited to see what google has in store. They have always been ahead of the curve. As for your Jeff keep it up :P

  • I do not think google's goal is to wage war with Microsoft and Apple just yet. Google has never been about stealing the market share. They continue to develop services that are easy to use and make computing less stressful. In say five years the Chrome OS might be the one to have because it will fully integrate into our connected lifestyles. Something I doubt Microsoft and Apple will be doing anytime soon.

    Google started as a service that helped people find pages on the web. At the time of its creation it was not really “a big deal”, but look at it now! We use google to find just about everything from entertainment when we are bored to maps of your local town.

    One thing you forgot to mention was that google is working on a completely new protocol to send traffic over the internet that will replace http (hopefully). Not only will this new protocol help eliminate network congestion but it will also give web developers a chance to create some amazing web based applications. More on the protocol here. http://dev.chromium.org/spdy/spdy-whitepaper

    Lastly I doubt we will see nation wide wifi access in our lifetime. Verizon plans to use that 700Mhz spectrum to power their new LTE network. ATT is using an 800Mhz spectrum to do the same. The future I see shows laptops with embedded devices that can connect to this LTE network and access the internet virtually anywhere in the world for a fee. Your laptop will be more like a large cell phone and will be powered by this “not” new but extremely useful web based Chrome OS.

    I am really excited to see what google has in store. They have always been ahead of the curve. As for your Jeff keep it up :P

  • We'll probably never get free national wi-fi. Lobbiests from cellular companies and ISP's will probably make a scare campaign and call it “socialism” and crap like that. Atleast we can all move to Canada and get free wifi. Overall I was disapointed with the announcement. I like where it was going but no desktop based apps? I don't think that web based apps are not nearly as functional or as feature filled as desktop apps today. Sure, Google Docs is pretty good, but doesn't compare to the features in MS Office or iWork. Maybe in 2 or 3 years it'll be better but If I were to get a netbook, I'd probably run linux on it.

  • I see your point Jeff, but when doing Tech support for people, no internet is what they mean when they say their computer does not work. so without internet most computers are useless to most people.. even a lot of gamers only play when you have internet..

    Plus you do not need wireless a plug works. :)

    for some people, like my kids who play webkinz and use google docs for home work, well Windows, Mac Linux are all overkill. When there is no internet they use an old tool called a pencil and paper.. and we play board games or read.. I know we are boring people.. (can't watch much TV with out internet when most of it comes from hulu or netflix)


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