Google to take on Microsoft with operating system
SAN FRANCISCO: Google has plans for its own personal computer operating system, the company announced on its official blog, setting up another clash between the Internet search king and software giant Microsoft.
"We're announcing a new project," said the Mountain View, California-based company, revealing the system would be based on its Chrome browser and would be an open source operating system initially targeted at netbooks.
The move is "our attempt to re-think what operating systems should be," Google said in a statement posted late Tuesday.
The search engine giant said it would open source the code for "Chrome OS" for user input and that netbooks running the system would be available by the middle of next year.
"Speed, simplicity and security are the key aspects of Google Chrome OS. We're designing the OS to be fast and lightweight, to start up and get you onto the web in a few seconds," the company said.
Google noted that in deciding to embark on the new track, they took heed of its user messages, namely that "computers need to get better." People "want their computers to always run as fast as when they first bought them," and they want to access the Internet instantly, Google said, adding that "we're definitely going to need a lot of help from the open source community to accomplish this vision." The Chrome browser was originally launched in September but has failed to enjoy the spectacular success of Google's search engine.
The company floated its first US television advertisements in recent months for Chrome, as the browser has only captured a tiny share of a market dominated by Microsoft's Internet Explorer.
Microsoft's freshly launched search engine Bing, meanwhile, aimed to hit back at Google's gains in the search market, although it still lags behind its rival.
Web analytics firm StatCounter said last week that Bing had carved out an 8.23 percent share of the US search market in June, up from 7.21 percent in April and 7.81 percent in May.
By contrast, however, Google continued to dominate the search market with a huge 78.48 percent share last month.
Google already has an operating system -- Android -- but the company said in its announcement that while there was some overlap, they were separate entities.
Android is only used for mobile phones at the moment, but the software has showcased Google's keen interest in expanding beyond its search engine base.