Google Chrome OS Announced: Animal, Vegetable or Mineral? Will Anyone Care by Late 2010?

I’m trying digest this announcement like a lot of other people…

Introducing the Google Chrome OS

So, let’s look at the basic points in the announcement and try to get a handle on this Google Chrome OS…

– It is Open Source
– It will initially target netbooks
– It will be available in the second half of 2010
– It will run on (Intel) x86 and ARM processors
– It is based on the Linux kernel but will have its own windowing system (instead of Gnome, KDE or something else)
– Its apps will be web-based and run in any browser
– It is NOT Google Android

Here’s my impression just based on the facts Google presented…

Why does anyone need it? Why would someone want it? These are very basic questions I think Google hasn’t addressed in this announcement. A lot can happen in a year. That is practically forver in Internet time. Apple might release a touchscreen netpad. We might see some really slick Windows 7 netbooks. Nokia might surprise everyone with a superduper follow-up to their N810 Internet Tablet. We might even see the revival of Windows CE based Handheld PCs in the form of netbooks.

At the moment, Google Chrome OS sounds like a big unreleased version of Palm’s webOS.