The latest version of Google's browser-based netbook operating system, Chrome OS 20, is now available for Chromebooks. The latest version features a host of improvements and bug fixes.
Google Drive cloud storage and offline support of Google Docs are among the
touted new features in the latest version of Google's Chrome OS releasedubbed
Chrome OS 20which the search company detailed in a July 12 blog post.
"The Google Chrome team is happy to
arrival of Chrome 20 to the Stable Channel for ChromeOS
," wrote Google
Chrome team member Danielle Drew in the post. "The Stable
channel has been updated to 20.0.1322.54 (Platform version: 2268.105.0) for
Chromebooks (Acer AC700, Samsung Series 5, Samsung Chromebook Series 5 550, and
Samsung Chromebox Series 3, and Cr-48). Machines will be receiving updates to
this version over the next several days."
Also included in the latest stable release are a firmware
update for Chromebook Series 5 550, updates to
Pepper Flash and crash fixes, according to Drew.
Chrome OS releases to the stable channel have been tested and approved by the Chrome
testing team and are the versions that are recommended for use by Chromebook
customers, according to the company. The ChromeOS releases are updated
regularly by their open-source development teamsabout every two to three weeks
for minor releases and every six weeks for major releases.
The Chrome OS
project has been
around since July 2009
when Google announced they had begun
work on a lighter, browser-based operating system
that was aimed at small
portable devices such as netbooks or notebook computers. The consumer version of
the product is Chrome OS
, while the open-source development project
where it is built
is called Chromium OS, according to Google.
introduction last year, Chrome OS has faced a lot of competition in the
consumer marketplace from existing device operating systems such as Microsoft's
Windows and Apple's iOS on devices, according to a May report in eWEEK
Chrome operating system came on the scene last year with hopes of becoming
something special in the marketplace
," the story reported. "The
platform is cloud-based, comes with a slimmed-down interface and, according to
Google, can take advantage of the next big trends in the online world. Whats
more, its running on a number of Chromebook models, which are designed to take
on Windows-based PCs."
inspire greater adoption, Google has been announcing updates to the operating
system that deliver a more traditional desktop user interface. The inclusion of
Google Drive storage capabilities and the addition of offline support of Google
Docs in the latest release bolster that trend.
Chromebooks on the market, from vendors Samsung and Acer, were unveiled in May
2011 at Google's I/O Conference.
featured a recent
of the latest Chrome OS-equipped notebook computers, pointing out
their dearth of applications and their then-limited abilities to work offline
with Google Docs, which has been addressed in the latest Chrome OS version 20
Samsung 5 550 Chromebook retails for $449.99 for the WiFi model and $549.99 for
the 3G wireless model, while the Acer AC700 Chromebook starts at $299. The
second-generation Samsung Chromebook comes in a slim, lightweight case and is
built around an Intel Celeron 867 dual-core processor with a 16GB solid-state
drive (SSD) and 4GB of RAM. The new Samsung Chromebox 3 comes with a 16GB SSD
and 4GB of RAM, and an Intel Celeron B840 dual-core (1.9GHz) processor and can
support up to a 30-inch monitor or use an HDTV using the Display Port output. The
Chromebox supports Bluetooth and comes with six USB ports.