Google is making rapid progress with its proprietary operating system, the Chrome OS, owing to the host of popular features that it has introduced with every new update. Now the latest update will include the ability for users to directly download Linux based apps and software onto their devices running the Chrome OS. Initially this feature is said to be made available as a preview only on the Pixelbook and subsequently will be made available on other models and devices. The announcement was made by Google at the recently concluded Google I/O.
Chrome OS: Multi-platform Functionality
This update follows closely on the heels of Google’s announcement of integration with Android app, with the release of its Android Studio, which is all set to release later this year. Now Chrome OS users have the choice of being able to run Android apps, Linux Apps and web based Chrome applications. According to Kan Liu, Google’s Director for Product Management for the Chrome OS, said that this is in line with its strategy of giving the Chrome OS cross platform compatibility and get users to start using Chrome OS to write code on these devices. Users now don’t need to use different machines running on Window, Linux or Mac to do developer work.
The integration will be via a secure VM (virtual machine), on which Linux apps can be emulated and run. Google’s spokesperson added that the Virtual Machine starts instantly and will offer a seamless user experience. The VM also integrates with the Chromebook so well that its features can be used on the VM as well.
Google has taken the Chrome OS very seriously as it has released a wide range of support and features in the last few months including PiP (Picture in Picture) support, updates on GBoard (Google’ proprietary smart virtual keyboard), support for video recording, shortcut for apps, full screen launcher on tablet mode, among many others. However, support for the Linux integration will not be provided initially and users must take care of this manually. This is expected to change once Google gets the integration running on some of their other devices.