July 9, 2009 at 11:08 am
Update: The screenshots were indeed faked. See here for more detail.
Following yesterday’s announcement of the Google Chrome Operating System that will initially hit netbooks next year, a few more bits of information are beginning to come through. This includes what look like the first images of the Chrome OS that have been leaked.
The leak comes from someone who has taken extreme measures to remain anonymous. He has hastily created a Wordpress blog called ‘Chrome OS Leak’, with some initial impressions of the OS as well as a few blurry screenshots. He works for a company that supplies parts for Acer laptops and was given a demonstration of the Chrome OS by a Google Rep.
He says the installation process took just 10 minutes on an Acer Extensa 4620Z laptop. The OS looks like it is extremely fast, even at this early stage, restarting in 25 seconds (desktop to desktop). The blue centre of the Chrome logo brings up what is in essence the ‘Start’ menu with the main directory. Navigations uses “Exploration” (like Windows Explorer) and “Browser” (for search options). The icons are large (a good thing for netbooks) but can be shrunk down depending on your preference.
These screenshots may easily be faked, but they do highlight a simple interface, something that Google repeatedly emphasised in yesterday’s announcement. Anyway, as this is an early dev beta, a lot is likely to change before next year’s release.
In related news, Google officially announced some of its hardware partners working on Chrome OS. This includes netbook heavyweights such as Asustek and Acer. ARM heavyweights include Freescale, Qualcomm and Texas Instruments. Other big partners include Hewlett-Packard, Lenovo, Toshiba and Adobe. The latter is good news and means that Flash won’t be a problem whether on a x86 or ARM chip. However, there are some big names missing including Sony, MSI, Samsung and LG.