Why Google’s Chrome OS is still a big lie

“Google likes to say that Chrome OS is an operating system that lets you do everything on the web,” Jared Newman writes for TIME Magazine’s Techland. “Don’t believe it.”

“At the Google IO conference [this week], the search giant made a rather disappointing announcement: After months of feedback from beta testers, Chrome OS would finally get a file browser for locally-stored data.
Google should never have listened to those people,” Newman writes. “What Chrome OS really needs is a web-based file manager that’s fully integrated with the operating system, so although it looks like you’re storing files locally, what you’re really doing is putting them on Google’s servers.”

Newman writes, “Instead, Chrome OS expects users to store all their data in individual services. Your photos go to Picasa. Your spreadsheets go to Google Docs. Your music goes to Google Music.
I’m not convinced people are comfortable having their files tied up in specific services… Users need a central repository for all their precious data so it can be easily transferred to any number of web services. Chrome OS doesn’t provide this service. Until that changes, you won’t be able to do everything on the web.”

Read more in the full article here.

Related article:
Google launches Chrome PCs in bid to take on Microsoft and Apple – May 12, 2011


    1. Nuh uh. It’s a full blown OS. I know because Google says so.

      Coming soon: Photoshop OS, and MS Word OS. And Firefox OS.

      As any tech person will tell you, the critical component of an OS is the name.

  1. The whole problem with this concept is it wasn’t made with consumers needs in mind. Instead, it was created from the start entirely for Google’s own selfish business needs (i.e. selling advertising on the web.)

    This is why the concept will fail.

  2. And when the backhoe strikes, or you get cut off because you forgot to give the ISP your new CC number, or your router goes titsup, or one of the servers goes down, or …

    1. Yes, and what if you need to use a 5 1/4″ floppy that has a DOS program on it or that 3 1/2″ floppy file that you need to look at or if you need to connect that external SCSI drive or if your car breaks down and you want to connect a horse to pull it, WHERE WILL YOU STORE YOUR BUGGY WHIP?

  3. “Users need a central repository for all their precious data”

    IF ONLY there were some kind of device we could put into computers that would allow you to store your files locally on your computer. Perhaps a scaled down version of a hard drive like they use in the old fashioned desktop towers. Or maybe an internal version of a thumb drive with chips rather than moving parts. I don’t know if such a thing is possible, but imagine the possibilities.

    Yeah, I’m not a cloud fan, especially of a Google cloud

  4. I’m not convinced that the cloud will succeed where personal computing is concerned. People will still need to access their files on a local drive if nothing else than from a speed perspective. Besides the cost of hard drives is falling to pennies per MB now so what’s the attraction of the cloud? You still have to go through the process of opening and saving files. If ease of use is what you want then get a Mac. Case closed.

  5. Every time I read about Chrome OS, I don’t get it.
    Every aspect is completely controlled by Google and your ISP.

    Makes MS’s monopoly and Apple’s closed garden seem like the wide-open prairie of the mid-West.

  6. If there was a need for Chrome everybody would be using the service now. You can use Chrome on your OS X or Windows machine now if that is your idea of the future. We do not because it is still not a capable operating system.

    The only new thing as of yesterday is that they now sell $28 per month incapable machines on a 3 year contract. This adds up to over $1000. Doesnt make sense. I must be missing something.

    1. it’s so true. I’ve seen a Chrome “OS” “computer” and *it’s just a crappy Linux box that’s been handicapped so that it is only capable of running a browser that you can download for free on any other machine.

  7. I have not used Chrome OS so I do not know how things are laid out but really it does not matter if your files are tied to specific services or not, even if you are just storing everything in one big folder on a google server you are still tied to the provider.

    They could just as easily create a way of exporting all of your data from Picasa, GMail, Docs etc. vs. just giving you one central storage location.

    I think Google adding local storage is them basically realizing that ‘cloud’ computing will likely be a hybrid of local resources and web resources.

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