Chrome Has the Winning Hand

By Don Reisinger  |  Posted 2009-09-17 Print this article Print


5. Google Has the Cash

Linux followers might use the size and might of Microsoft as their rallying cry, but it has helped Microsoft dominate the operating system market. It will also help Google dominate competing Linux distributions. In the software market, having the money to throw into marketing to get an operating system in front of the right people can make all the difference. Other Linux distributions don't have that kind of cash. Google does.

6. The Halo Effect Is Strong

When moving to Linux, there's little else that compels users to make the move other than their distaste for "mainstream" operating systems. The same might be true in Nokia's case. Working to its advantage, Google has several services, including Search, Gmail and Docs, that might ease users into Chrome OS. After all, they use other Google products online with much success. Why not try out its operating system?

7. Microsoft Is in the Game

This might sound counterintuitive, but the very fact that Microsoft will be trying to match Chrome OS will help Google's operating system. Microsoft will legitimize Chrome OS by releasing an operating system that competes directly with Google's product. An online OS war will erupt. It will garner the attention of media outlets, and that will filter down into the consumer base. And in the process, Chrome OS will easily overshadow competing Linux distributions.

8. It's the Future

Although there's still some serious work left to do, online operating systems are the future. As software moves to the cloud, it was only a matter of time before the operating system did too. It might not have the same kind of functionality as Windows, but it will make for a convenient, readily available operating system that, I think, people will respond well to. The Web is where the tech industry is going. And Google is on the cutting edge.

9. Google Likes Open Source

One of the main reasons why Linux has gained such a loyal following is because it's the open-source operating system. Those who want to tweak with design, add or remove features, or just have fun changing their operating system can do that with Linux. There's just one problem: They can do that with Google's Chrome OS, and soon they can play a role in improving it.

10. Chrome OS Is Linux

Lest we forget, Chrome OS is based on Google Chrome and the Linux kernel. In other words, Chrome OS is Linux. Why would a person looking to use Linux opt for something other than Google's operating system? Sure, there will be some who stay true to Ubuntu and the rest, but for the vast majority of folks who don't follow the space so closely, Chrome OS will quickly become synonymous with Linux with those people. And that can't be good for competing distributions.

Don Reisinger is a freelance technology columnist. He started writing about technology for Ziff-Davis' Since then, he has written extremely popular columns for, Computerworld, InformationWeek, and others. He has appeared numerous times on national television to share his expertise with viewers. You can follow his every move at

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