Is the future of Chrome OS in doubt as Google readies Android Pixel computer?

29 Sep 2015

Pictured: The original Chromebook Pixel

Google has opted for its next Pixel C notebook/tablet combo with detachable keyboard to be powered by Android Marshmallow, raising questions about the future of Chrome OS.

Google’s line-up of Chromebooks powered by Chrome OS were quite basic devices that had powerful hardware, particularly in terms of touchscreen and display capabilities, but ultimately were supposed to represent the future of browser-powered operating systems.

Much of what Google actually does is designed to influence and guide technology development across the internet and technology ecosystem – the Chrome browser being a case in point – and raise standards.

But the Pixel C seems to be a change of direction focused on moving Android 6.0 (Marshmallow) into the convertables space and the viability of Android as an OS for full-screen computing and not just for smartphones and tablets.

Google will manufacture the Pixel C itself

According to Android Police the Pixel C, codenamed Ryu, will have a 10.2-inch display with 308ppi resolution.

The device will be powered by an NVIDIA X1 quad-core processor and a Maxwell GPU.

The Pixel C, due out later this year, will be supplemented by 3GB of RAM.

The new machine will also retain the light bar on the back that glows to show remaining battery life and it will come with a USB Type-C charger.

The device will come with detachable keyboard options in aluminium and leather.

Interestingly, the Pixel C will be manufactured by Google itself and not another manufacturer like Samsung or LG.

The news comes as Google prepares to make its new Nexus 5x from LG and 6P smartphone from Huawei available for pre-order in Ireland, the US, Canada and UK.

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