May 2, 2010

Google Chrome OS Not On System Builders' Radar

"Google is engaging with the big guys with Chrome OS, and they haven't come down to the channel yet. I don't think they'll be reaching out to system builders for a while," said Todd Swank, vice president of marketing at system builder Nor-Tech, Burnsville, Minn.

Nor-Tech's Swank is one who believes the significance of a new operating system hitting the market shouldn't be underestimated. "There was actually a time when I thought it would never happen again," he chortled.

"Obviously, Microsoft has been the dominant player for a long time, but competition does everyone good. If Chrome OS is good, that may prompt Microsoft to bring down pricing on Windows," Swank added.

It's a point worth pondering: Perhaps Chrome OS is another Google effort to exert a gravitational pull on a Microsoft-dominated market. Although Microsoft scoffs at suggestions that Google Docs is eating into its Office market share, the fact that Microsoft is introducing free, cloud based versions of Office apps with Office 2010 shows that it's aware of the threat Google poses.

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