Google is hosting an event Tuesday in San Francisco, where an invitation "from the Chrome team" most likely augurs the introduction of Google's Chrome OS.
The event will take place at 1 p.m. EST on Tuesday, Dec. 7, at an offsite facility. Google representatives did not respond to requests for additional information.
Chrome OS is expected to be little more than a bare-bones operating system, good enough to quickly boot into the Chrome browser. Google executives have said previously that what they're trying to accomplish is to quickly push the user onto the Web, where users can interact with Google's Web apps and services.
When Chrome OS makes it to the market by the end of 2010, all activity will be stored in the cloud, Sundar Pichai, vice president of product management at Google, said during a 2009 technical preview at the company's Mountain View headquarters. Therefore, if you lose your Chrome OS-based netbook and buy another one, all of your information will be recovered as soon as you log into the new machine.
What's unclear is whether Google will launch Chrome OS with any hardware partners, or even launch a netbook itself. Dell has reportedly been in talks to use the Chrome OS, and Inventec, HP, Acer and HTC have all been named as potential launch partners.
In 2009, Pichai did not reveal pricing information, but said that it would "be in the range of what people expect today" for a netbook.
Google does, however, plan to introduce a slightly larger than usual netbook to accommodate more comfortable typing and viewing, and it is, therefore, "hard to predict" what type of prices to expect a year from now. Google has not specified a price target that it wishes its partners to hit, he said.
Google will initially focus on netbooks, but plans to eventually expand that to laptops and desktops. That will not happen in the 2010 timeframe, however, Pichai said.
"Chrome OS is an operating system which is in early availability and it's targeted primarily at the netbook space today," Google chief executive Eric Schmidt said in September. "Because it's free and open source, people will also use it for tablets. But I think it's too early to say exactly how it'll play out. We're looking forward to the partnership announcements later this year."
The other possibility for a Google Chrome-related event could also be the launch of an app store. In May, Pichai told reporters at its Google I/O conference here in San Francisco that Google will be "announcing all the possibilities for the store at a later date."
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