Google Chrome is destined to succeed. Consider this; today is the biggest day in Google’s history, since following the release of its new web browser, it will go head to head with Microsoft by creating first ever cloud-based alternative to Windows OS. I know what you are going to say, you will probably mention the fact that Google Chrome so far will run on Windows, which is somewhat weird. However, even without its new web browser, today Google iscapable of offering a sound alternative to Microsoft Office. And you do not need Windows to take advantage it. All you need is a minimal distribution of Linux equipped with Mozilla Firefox, and you are in business.
In my view, the introduction of Google Chrome will position Google at the forefront of cloud computing. Other important players in that space includes companies like ZOHO that offers a complete lineup of business applications delivered as Software as a Service (SaaS), whereby, as far as end-user is concerned, there is nothing to purchase, install, manage or upgrade. Finally, both technology enthusiasts and computer manufacturers will have a choice when configuring their systems. One of the issues Google is faced with is slow consumer adoption pace of software as a service offering whereby many people are concerned with the information privacy and security since user data will reside off-site in Google’s datacenters. As far as most Canadians are concerned, any electronic information that resides on the U.S. soil is subject to the United States Patriot Act, and therefore can be disclosed upon request of the U.S. government agencies.
Nonetheless, almost everyone I know, including many non-technical individuals slowly but surely adopt Google Apps, which is offered as a freebie to consumers, or as a Premium service priced at $50 per user per year, which is a lot less than many of us spend on coffee. While we are on the subject, Microsoft is going to hurt unless the company finds ways to respond to the competition with its own comparable offering. For example, even though Microsoft Office must be installed on either local hard-drive, or on the network, they could offer Office as a subscription service for let’s say $59 per user per year providing tighter integration with the Office Live Workspaces and Small Business. Even though it is not ideal since the solution still requires Microsoft Windows to run, it would be a huge step forward.