Google Looks to Steal Microsoft's Lunch Money
Lots of news about Google (Nasdaq: GOOG) this morning:
First, it'll be directly competing with Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT) by launching a PC-based operating system called Google Chrome OS.
From the official Google blog:
So today, we're announcing a new project that's a natural extension of Google Chrome — the Google Chrome Operating System. It's our attempt to re-think what operating systems should be.
Google Chrome OS is an open source, lightweight operating system that will initially be targeted at netbooks. Later this year we will open-source its code, and netbooks running Google Chrome OS will be available for consumers in the second half of 2010. Because we're already talking to partners about the project, and we'll soon be working with the open source community, we wanted to share our vision now so everyone understands what we are trying to achieve.
Google shares are up about 1% today; Microsoft is down 1% thus far. (I'd have a hard time believing this news surprised anyone, to be honest.)
And from the NYTimes:
After Five Years, Gmail Finally Sheds the ‘Beta’
What took Google so long?
Like many software products, Google’s Gmail service was first released with a “beta” label on it — meaning that while it was polished enough for public use, it was still in a testing phase, so any glitches were to be excused. Beta versions, which are sandwiched between internal “alpha” versions and final “release” versions, typically have a lifespan of weeks or months.
But Gmail was different. Released on April 1, 2004, it was still in beta five years and tens of millions of users later.
We'll have some Fool.com coverage of Chrome OS ... check back a little later today. And let us know your thoughts by commenting below.
-Brian Richards (MSFT shareholder)