First look at Google’s new Chrome OS netbook

6 Jan 2011

LAS VEGAS – got a first gawk at the forthcoming Chrome OS netbook – a completely browser-based netbook running on Intel’s Atom processor.

At the Consumer Electronics Show, Dan Rogers from Intel’s product marketing division showed me a beta version of the forthcoming netbook, named the CR-48, running Chrome OS.

It truly is a browser-based platform – there is nothing else – and this can be quite disconcerting because you are at first looking for some kind of menu screen.

First pure cloud-based operating system

The appearance of the device is that of a basic bog standard netbook, all matte black with a Chrome logo emblazoned on the front. The device is light and functional, but at first glance it doesn’t stand out from the crowd. Then again, this is a prototype and may not be the finished article.

“This is really the first pure cloud-based operating system,” Rogers explained.

“What is really impressive about it at first is the high levels of security and great battery life, as well as the high resilience.

“Literally, everything is done through the browser,” he said.

More from the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas:

Revealed – next-generation tablet PCs running on Atom

Sony Ericsson reveals Android 2.3 Experia arc

Skype founders’ on-demand music service hits the US

RIM BlackBerry 4G PlayBook tablet gets public preview

Motorola Mobility debuts new Android devices at CES 2011

Ballmer reveals CES vision of Windows on any device

Samsung reveals ‘Wi-Fi only’ version of Galaxy Tab

Windows 8 to run on Intel and ARM platforms, Microsoft says

Intel reveals silver bullet to save Hollywood

1m PCs are being shipped daily – Intel’s Otellini

Consumer electronics market vying for US$1trn mark in 2011

Angry Birds launched for Windows PCs on Intel apps store

Amazon reveals Kindle apps for Android and Windows tablets

PriceGrabber reveals localisation apps for iPad and iPhone

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years