So it turns out the browser is an intrinsic part of the OS after all, except that the browser is essentially the OS. Google’s announcement of the Chrome OS – basically a stripped down Linux version that boots directly to Chrome, letting Chrome (rather than the underlying OS) manage the various web sites as “applications” – is great news for all web apps. I am typing this post in a Samsung netbook running XP, but it has been long time since I ran any app on this netbook other than Firefox or Chrome. Google’s announcement opens the floodgates and there are going to be many such devices, like the CrunchPad, which predates Chrome OS, but follows the same basic idea.
This is going be a tidal wave that lowers the cost of computing yet again, enabling a country like India, where mobile penetration is at 50% of the adult population yet PC penetration is well below 10%, to become a full participant in the internet age.