Stop calling Chrome an operating system, it’s JUST A BROWSER!

Why is it so many people are jumping up and down shouting “OPERATING SYSTEM” now that Chrome is out. I mean come on, out of all the big four (IE, Firefox, Safari, Opera) it’s the most basic browser you can possible get. I has a grand total of 4 options (okay, I’m exaggerating slightly) and takes up a fraction of the disk space.

In fact, if Chrome is an OS, then so is Firefox. In firefox, I can blog, I can manage my e-mail, I can keep up to date with my favourite blogs, I can listen to my music, I can check the weather, I can see what time it is, and a whole host of other every day tasks that Chrome hasn’t even touched upon.

Hype has it’s limits and throwing words like operating system around because of a new web browser are very much going beyond those limits. Seriously, it’s not healthy. Stop it.

Now, I understand why Chrome is exciting. The ability to separate web apps from the normal browsing experience is big. It’s the way things are going. Eventually we’ll all be running thin clients using streamed and/or web-based apps and so the need for big operating systems like Windows simply won’t be there.

Google knows this so they’re simply making the next logical step – providing the tools to help make that transition. In the same vein, they’re fully aware that more and more people are becoming wise to the availability of services on their mobile phones and need a better user experience – hence the Android project.

I’ve long thought that Google is essentially setting itself up to be the new ‘backbone’ for web surfers. They’re already doing this with search by powering over 70% of all searches on line. Chrome is simply an extension that looks to the future.

We will still need operating systems and they will still come from the likes of Microsoft, Apple and the Linux community. Google may make a foray into that area but for now what they’ve done is build a damn good web browser. Nothing more, nothing less.

Update: I’m not the only one frustrated by all this “WebOS” talk.


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