Google seems to think that Chrome OS no longer belongs exclusively to its line of Chromebooks. The company plans to bring many of the features of this operating system to the Chrome browser on Windows 8.
The first step Google took in this direction was the launch of desktop apps for Chrome. The intention is to run these independently of the browser, despite pertaining to the same ecosystem. Such a transition will make Chrome OS, which was basically built around Google’s browser, feel more like a conventional operating system. For this, Google developed a launcher for Chrome apps that enables these apps to behave like native Windows programs.
Until now, whenever launching Chrome from the Metro UI of Windows 8, people ended up with a full-screen version of the browser, nothing else being much different. Things will take a turn for the best once Chrome 32 is officially released. This version will bring an Chrome OS taskbar along with the possibility of running Chrome desktop apps and web apps.
Chrome VP Brian Rakowski noted in an interview with The Verge that Windows is only one of the platforms Chrome apps will be ported to: “We’re targeting the desktop as our first order of business because that’s where the majority of our users are. We want to nail that first. But our goal, eventually, is to get this to run everywhere that Chrome runs.”
Just in case you’re not aware of that, the Chrome present does not only run on Windows 8, but also on Android, Linux and iOS. I’m not sure how many of our usual software these Chrome apps could replace, but comparing Google’s strategy to a Trojan horse is not very far-fetched.
As far as the Windows 8 experience is concerned, people will not benefit from all of Chrome OS’ features. However, it will be enough to give us an idea about how Chrome OS looks and feels. As extreme as it may seem, it’s not impossible to think that some will jump in Google’s bandwagon once they get a taste of its operating system. After all, Chromebooks are much cheaper than notebooks running Windows or Mac OS, and apart from gaming and CAD, they can handle pretty much everything you throw at them. It remains to be seen how things evolve once Chrome 32 gets here.