View Full Version : Is stripped user agent data pointing to a Google OS?

Dec 8, 2008, 02:02 AM
Here we go again. It seems like just yesterday we heard the first whispers of a Google desktop OS, and products like Chrome stoke suspicions that the Mountain View-based company is setting itself up to invade the PC. Although Google insists that it's focusing on the cloud, since Android was announced, the feasibility of a Google-branded desktop OS has certainly increased. Now, market research firm Net Applications is reporting that it has seen a third of the traffic from Google's employees with intentionally blocked identification strings. This could be a real indicator that the big G is hard at work on a desktop OS -- or just a sign that folks at Google don't care to share their OS of choice. Hopefully, we'll be hearing more sooner rather than later, but feel free to chime in with your Google global domination theories and rabid speculation in the comments.Engadget (http://www.engadget.com/2008/12/07/is-stripped-user-agent-data-pointing-to-a-google-os/).

I'm not convinced, interesting though.

Dec 8, 2008, 02:17 AM
Absolutely no way that 30% of Google Employees could be using a "Google" OS without leaks this far.

Dec 8, 2008, 02:25 AM
http://www.google.com/enterprise/ ?

In all honesty, if google were to put out a desktop operating system, who would know? Its likely that it would be just another linux flavor anyway. How many are there? Too many for commercial applications to be developed widespread for it. Android has potential to go good places, and outshine symbian, but I doubt even that will take away from RIM, Apple, and Microsoft's footings in the smartphone industry.

Dec 8, 2008, 02:44 AM
Maybe they're using Phoenix OS!! ;)

Dec 8, 2008, 02:54 AM
Android has potential to go good places, and outshine symbian, but I doubt even that will take away from RIM, Apple, and Microsoft's footings in the smartphone industry.What makes you say that?

Other than a few business peeps most people couldn't be less interested in WinMo. Apple will only ever permit their OS on an iPhone, and RIM will only ever have their OS on their range of devices.

There is a huge huge potential for Android. LG, Samsung etc, all make some very nice handsets, touch screen too, they just up to now have run a crappy OS (WinMo, in-house). With Android being out there and available they now have a software platform to build their hardware ideas around, and it won't cost them huge amounts in development costs to do it.

I think we're going to be seeing a lot of amazing Android based handsets in the next couple of years.

Dec 8, 2008, 03:32 AM
RIM and Microsoft have business users needs as their primary directive, and Apple has the general market's needs in sight. None of them are going to give up ground to anything but each other. Symbian still has almost half of active smartphones worldwide, but in the US its a paltry player. Everything that is said about Android was once said of Symbian - accessibility to developers, ease of use, expandability, and so on - and it remains unimpressive. This is where Android can take off, and I think that's where it will stay. The big players are absolutely easy to integrate into your life, who wants to complicate things just so you can drag around a clock widget with your finger?

Dec 8, 2008, 03:42 AM
Google already made an OS based on Ubuntu Linux. They put it on low end hardware that was sold through big box stores like walmart. It is called gOS. I beleive there is a website for it. If that engadget post is new it is most likely referring to something else.

Just read the gOS wiki and it makes no reference to google but when gOS first came out there was much talk about googles involvement with it. Interesting that it has wine out of the box.

More searching confirms that the connection between gOS and google is pure rumor.

question fear
Dec 8, 2008, 10:07 AM
Is it possible that the google employees were using a build of chrome that is designed around hiding the user agent? Or they are working with dev versions of android, or they just don't want people to know if they are rocking macbooks or thinkpads.

I do think google is probably looking for a linux partner to really hunker down with, though. They could experiment more with offline google docs access, etc, and give openoffice a run for its money, and if they integrate gmail as a desktop client they could create a nice little ecosystem. And linux is modular and already being tied in via android, plus they can make it super lightweight and a nice netbook OS replacement.