Can Chrome Take on Apple?

Google introduced the Chromebooks this week as a way to go after he elusive education and enterprise market with a sleek and cost-effective product. But can that product stay in business if it's incompatible with Apple products?

ZDNet's James Kendrick sees the Apple incompatibility the "biggest barrier" for Google's success.

I don't see it as a barrier at all. I know of several people who have a PC and an iPad, and run their lives on two distinct platforms. Secondly, Android users are outstripping Apple iOS users in growth and apps so it makes little sense to cater to those iOS users who likely wouldn't buy an Android product anyway. Could you see this argument made the other way around? The biggest barrier to Apple's success will be its incompatible with Android. Sounds ridiculous, right?

(And by the way, Apple is doing gangbusters in enterprise and education as it is.)

A former colleague of mine at PC World instead says the biggest barrier to success for Google is most people thinking the Chromebook only works if connected to the Internet. That it's a glorified paperweight without any locally installed apps.

Wrong, because Chromebooks will come June 15th packaged with offline versions of Google Docs, Gmail and Google Calendar. Google will also offer other programs offline and each 12.1-inch will have internal storage. Once could argue the Google Apps are superior to Microsoft and that Chrome is virtually virus-proof. 

Although I'm no Chrome fan, I do love a dainty machine with some substance. If only all laptops were so compact and efficient.

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