Last week, the world saw Apple’s long anticipated tablet device, the iPad, for the first time. In the aftermath since that announcement, a few things have become clear: it will be great for some people, but its apparent lack of flexibility (at least in its first iteration) may leave something to be desired. It’s increasingly looking like the best alternative will be Google’s Chrome OS, which is clearly on a collision course with the iPad. And tonight, we’ve come across some very impressive mockups of what Chrome OS may look like on a tablet form factor.
The photos have been posted to the official Chromium site (Chromium is the open source project behind Chrome and ChromeOS). And while Chromium is not actually part of Google, it appears that these mockups were put together by Glen Murphy, Google Chrome’s designer. In other words, there’s a good chance that the final version of Chrome OS will resemble this.
Update: Be sure to watch this video to see a mockup of the tablet in action.
It’s worth pointing out that there almost certainly will be multiple “Google Tablets”, given that Chrome OS won’t be tied to a single device. That said, Google is working with select hardware partners to ensure that it runs on devices that are up to its specifications, and there may be one tablet device that is designated as the “Google Tablet”, much like the Nexus One is the “Google Phone”.
Google Chrome OS is an open source PC operating system. The operating system is based on Linux and runs only on specifically designed hardware. The OS relies heavily on cloud-based applications, and the user interface will be similar to the Google Chrome browser. As announced on July 7, 2009, the operating system is open source and targeted at netbooks. On June 15, 2011, the first Chrome OS-powered devices, known as Chromebooks, were released.