Forget Google Chrome OS: Root for Microsoft, Apple, and Linux

Yesterday, Google announced their intention to release a new operating system designed primarily for Netbooks.  The new operating system, Chrome OS, will now compete against established Linux vendors as well as Microsoft for market and mind share.  While the initial reactions to this announcement were positive, I have a different spin.

This announcement underscores a major challenge at Google; they are a “one trick pony”.  Google is simply a giant advertising machine that needs critical inputs regarding our personal information to better serve their advertising clients.  While many individuals cling to an unhealthy affection towards Google, the truth is Google provides its services, search, mail, calendar, gears, etc. not for the sake of good, but for the sake of money.

At first, Google was satisfied with the collection of information via third party web browsers such as Firefox and IE.  However, their hunger for personal information led them to release an even more intrusive technology; the Chrome browser.  Now they crave even more information that can only be obtained via having access to everything; the Operating System.  By collecting all this personal information, whether it is scrubbed or not, Google can better profile its users and charge more to its advertisers.  It’s not simply a numbers game any longer as the quality of the information about your user population is as, if not more, important then the quantity; a lesson Facebook plays perfectly.

I’m rooting for Microsoft, Apple, and Linux to put Google’s Chrome OS back in its preverbal box. Google can keep Android, Chrome, Desktop Search, and anything else they desire to load on my personal computers to themselves.  Does anyone seriously think Microsoft did not see this coming?  If Apple released OS XI generically, would anyone care about Chrome OS?  Will Chrome OS make a dent in the fiercely loyal and growing Ubuntu population?

Google’s corporate motto may say “Don’t be evil”, but that’s like the pot calling the kettle black.  One person’s road to Evil is another one’s road to riches.