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Chrome OS

The Google Chrome Operating System (Chrome OS) was announced by Google nine months after it released the Chrome browser. Google Chrome OS is described as a lightweight operating system that will make its debut targeting netbook and mobile devices.

The OS, which is the Google Chrome Web browser running within a new windowing system on top of a Linux kernel, is expected to be able to run on x86 as well as ARM chips. Google is expected to open source the code in 2009, and netbooks running the Google Chrome OS will be available for consumers in the second half of 2010.

The Google Chrome OS will soon have competition from Firefox OS, a similar lightweight, open source operating system built on the Linux kernel.  The Mozilla operating system project started out under the Boot to Gecko name, and devices powered by the Firefox OS are expected to start appearing in early 2013.

See also "Google Chrome: From Browser to Operating System" in the Did You Know...? section of Webopedia.

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