have announced their latest project, Google Chrome OS, an open-source platform for x86 and ARM based netbooks, notebooks and computers. Building on their existing Chrome browser, Google Chrome OS is tipped to load and be internet-ready in seconds, be inherently secure from viruses and malware, and present no issues with hardware or software updates. Chrome OS has at its heart a Linux kernel, with Chrome running within a new windowing system. Google Chrome OS will first appear on netbooks in the second-half of 2010, with the search giant apparently already in talks with manufacturers regarding distribution. Prior to that, however, they will make Chrome OS open-source later on in 2009, allowing developers to get to grips with the platform. Since most of the user experience will take place on the web, with users interacting with web-apps, developers will be able to use existing coding skills to create software that not only runs on Google Chrome OS but any standards-based cross-platform browser. As for Android, that remains a going concern for Google, with the company suggesting that "choice will drive innovation for the benefit of everyone, including Google" in the areas where the two platforms overlap.
Android-powered netbooks in Q3 2009. That official launch window is still months away, but the top netbook maker on the planet was showing the machine off at Computex. The Acer Aspire One D250 was spied at the show running Android as its operating system. Acer was fast to point out that the rig seen wasn't the actual product but merely a test bed system. Another Android-powered machine has popped up as well.
netbook announcement earlier is all of a sudden terribly less important to us, having seen ECS' Android netbook offering. The T800 is another new Computex 2009 showing, boasting a Sony VAIO P-style form-factor with an 8.1-inch widescreen LCD display and a choice of 800MHz or 1GHz TI OMAP3 processors. Inside the 246 x 121 x 20 mm casing lurks a 2.5-inch drive bay suitable for SSD or HDD storage, plus two Mini-PCIe card slots that ECS suggest you could employ for dual HSPA and WiMAX connectivity. There are two USB 2.0 ports and a headphone jack. A choice of 0.3- or 1.3-megapixel webcams and 512MB of RAM round out the main specs. Best of all is the price: ECS are saying it'll drop in the second half of 2009, priced under $500. [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-W9hOWCl10k[/youtube] [via SlashGear]
has confirmed that it will be the first company to ship Android-based netbooks, with the budget ultraportables expected to hit the market in Q3 2009. The Android netbooks will go on sale alongside Acer's Windows-based range, rather than replacing it, and be based on Intel's Atom processor. According to Acer's global president for IT products, Jim Wong, "today's netbooks are not close to perfection at all" and that "if we do not continue to change our mobile internet devices, consumers may not choose them any more." However there's still work to be done fettling Android in its netbook guise: "we'll still have to see what kind of applications the Android software can run on and how stable it will be" commented Vincent Chen, an analyst at Yuanta Securities. No specific release dates have been shared, beyond the Q3 window, and Wong declined to comment on possible pricing. Analysts have previously estimated that a Windows XP license adds $25 to the cost of the average netbook; Microsoft have justified that by claiming buyers are looking for a similar mobile environment as they are used to on their desktops. Earlier this year, Compal - the OEM behind Acer's Aspire One netbooks - were tipped to be developing an Android netbook.
netbook running Android. Actually, this is a Smartbook, not a netbook, and rather than using the typical Atom processor it's based on Qualcomm's 1GHz Snapdragon chipset. That means the Smartbook - which is thinner than the ASUS Eee PC 1008HA - can be fanless and offer super-long runtimes and standby, despite supporting 720p video playback. Various prototypes of Smartbook designs were shown; you can see more here. According to Qualcomm, the first Smartbooks - which can also use a new 1.3GHz chipset, and an existing 1.5GHz dual-core version - will hit the shelves by the end of 2009. No word on whether Android will be among the OSes offered, but given its native support for 3G WWAN, GPS and other wireless connectivity, and the fact that Qualcomm's chipsets offer all of those, it seems a likely choice for at least some manufacturers. jkkmobile video demo: [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SQO2MDDdZ0Q[/youtube] TweakTown video demo:
Dell from experimenting with the open-source OS on their latest netbook. The Dell Inspiron Mini 10v packs the usual mixture of an Intel Atom N270 processor, 1GB of RAM and a 120GB hard-drive, but Dell normally fit it with Windows XP Home. In this video demo, however, Dell's Doug Anson shows the Mini 10v running three different platforms, including Cupcake. There's little detail, sadly, but he does say that it's a "small, snappy" OS and that it "runs fairly nicely". Sadly Anson also reiterates that Dell have no "announced product plans with the Android environment", but the fact that they're testing it and with seemingly decent results does bode well for the future. The Inspiron Mini 10v retails from $299 in the US, and is available to order now. [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HliEujxRoYQ[/youtube]
Alpha 680 netbook running the Android OS has been released. The Alpha 680 is intended to be a budget netbook with a target price of $250; for that, though, you'll at least get a touchscreen. Unfortunately the touchscreen is pretty much the start and end of any decent specs, with the rest of the Alpha 680's abilities being seriously underwhelming. An ARM11 533MHz processor, 1GB of storage (4GB max) and just 128MB of RAM (256MB max) are disappointing even in netbook circles, hence Android running on the 680 pretty much as it does on a G1. The videos also demonstrate the problem with putting what's right now a mobile OS onto a larger device, without reworking to suit the bigger display. The Skytone's touchscreen may only be 7-inches, but Android still looks comically spread out. [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lSo3icNEBNE[/youtube] [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pQUcoQgs2IM[/youtube] [via netbooknews.de]