Google demos Chrome OS, announces partnership with Verizon Wireless

Google held a special event on Tuesday to show off progress made over the course of the last year with its Chrome line of products. Most interestingly, perhaps, are the new Chrome OS features the Internet giant showed off. Plenty of Here are some highlights from the event:

  • “Nothing but the Web.”
  • Chrome OS features a fast and simple setup process, remarkably fast boot times and an instant resume feature to minimize wait time when the OS wakes from sleep.
  • Unified experience across Chrome on netbooks, desktops and more.
  • Multiple user support and guest mode — everything a user does in guest mode is private and history is deleted instantly when a session is ended.
  • Verizon Wireless cellular data connectivity (international options are available as well) in every Chrome OS notebook/netbook — no contracts, no activation fees and monthly plans starting at $9.99.
  • Updates are seamless — no user operations are required to update the OS or apps.
  • Most secure OS in the world — security is a major focus of Chrome OS; all Chrome OS data is encrypted by default.
  • Verified boot — core OS components are in firmware that cannot be modified.
  • Enterprise options — Google is working closely with partners like Citrix to ensure the enterprise market is addressed.
  • Google’s Chrome OS PCs get faster over time, not slower like other PCs.
  • Initial manufacturing partners include Acer, Samsung and Intel.

Chrome OS is a work in progress and there is still a lot of work to be done. The first Chrome OS notebooks are due by the middle of 2011. There is a Chrome OS pilot program in the mean time, though — a program for early adopters where they will get a “CR-48″ netbook featuring a 12.1-inch display, a full-sized keyboard, built in 3G and Wi-Fi, 8 hours of usage time per charge. Interestingly, there are no hard drives, no caps lock keys and the laptop is jailbreak-friendly. End users have several ways to apply for the pilot program, the easiest of which is completing an application at online at google.com/chromeos.

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