Some analysts believe smartbooks with the Google Chrome OS will have a hard time competing against netbooks with Windows, due to an uncompetitive price and lack of application support. Bob O'Donnell, vice president of clients and displays at IDC, argues that Google has relatively high performance requirements, and estimates smartbooks with Google Chrome OS will be more expensive than Windows-based netbooks.
That's one reason why Chrome will not be successful in an expanding mobile systems market that will see multiple winners, said Bob O'Donnell, vice president of client s and displays at International Data Corp.
Google's requirements for systems using Chrome include relatively high performance graphics, accelerometers and other sensors. "PC OEMs say the hardware requirements—still under NDA--will make the systems actually more expensive than a Windows device, yet they don't have anywhere near the applications support," O'Donnell said in a talk at Directions 2010 here.
In addition, Chrome is designed for online use only. However, users of Wintel-based netbooks report they use their systems offline as much as 40 percent of the time. In addition, Chrome runs all applications in a browser, an approach O'Donnell said others have tried but has not worked.
"There's a serious challenge for Chrome, and I don't think people will like it," he said.