Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 6th Sep 2013 15:22 UTC

The new apps look and behave much like the native apps you find on Windows and OS X. They're built using web technologies, but also with Chrome-specific code that means they won't be able to run on other web browsers - they're truly Chrome apps. They can exist outside of your browser window as distinct apps, work offline, and sync across devices and operating systems. They can also access your computer's GPU, storage, camera, ports, and Bluetooth connection. Chrome Apps are, for now, only available through Chrome on Windows or Chrome OS on a Chromebook. Mac users will have to wait another six weeks before their version of Chrome will be updated.

This is very important for Chrome OS - since this means it can now have applications outside of the browser. Google's plans for Chrome OS suddenly became a whole lot clearer.

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Google's business strategy
by Tony Swash on Sat 7th Sep 2013 17:03 UTC
Tony Swash
Member since:

Everything that Google does, or least everything of import, has to be understood in the light of it's core business strategy. Thus is doubly so in the GoogleV2 post Schmidt phase of the company.

Google's strategic aim is to:

a) Insert it's services in everything that is happening on the internet, that is a horizontally across all platforms and activities.

b) Do everything possible to ensure that all users of it services and products must be signed into their Google+ accounts. Like many others I initially misunderstood Google+ and saw it as an attempt to compete with Facebook. That was a mistake, Google+ is much more than that because it it is central to the reason that Google seeks to be universally present across all platforms and activities which is to collect data on user activity so that it can increase the value of it's advertising business.

Android was a defensive play against initially Microsoft Mobile and then against the far more threatening iOS, and as such it has been a success from Google's point of view, it has done it's job. Android has prevented iOS from taking over the mobile device market and dominating it to such an extent that Apple could have at some point destroyed Google's business model by shutting out it's services. There was no sign that Apple was planning to do that but Google could not take the chance, it could not allow Apple to hold a kill switch on it's business. Does anyone doubt that without Android no non-Apple handset OEM could have come up with anything to compete with iOS in time to prevent domination by Apple? But now Android has done it's job, development of the core OS has slowed because Google doesn't need to develop the OS as it's not trying to build a phone OS business (the mistake Rubin's made and paid for), and Play Services means Google can roll out it's services across all the fragments of Android across the globe.

Google is far more focussed at the moment on Chrome as infrastructural layer to ensure the ubiquity of it's services. This extension of Chrome into off-line apps is just another step in that process as the key feature from Google's point of view is another lever to push people into always being signed into their Google+ account.

Google is always going to feel most threatened by other horizontal business models such as Microsoft and Facebook, any significant area of user activity it cannot collect data on devalues it's core advertising business, but vertical business models such as Apple's, and increasingly Samsung's, also hold their own threat but as long as Google can get it's services into those horizontal stacks it's business model can work.

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