Google insists it isn’t killing Chrome OS

A recent report claimed Google plans to merge Android and Chrome OS into one platform.

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On Thursday, the The Wall Street Journal published a report claiming that Google is in the process of merging its two operating systems: Chrome OS and Android.   According to the Journal’s sources, Chrome OS would cease to exist after being folded into Android sometime in 2017. Combining the two operating systems has been in the works for nearly two years, the report said.

Google’s Chrome OS runs on laptop and desktop computers, and has gained traction in the education sector. Android powers 1.4 billion smartphones, tablets, and watches.  Shortly after the Journal’s story appeared, Google’s newly appointed senior vice president for Android and Chrome, Hiroshi Lockheimer, took to Twitter to refute the Journal’s report, stating, “We are very committed to Chrome OS.”  A Google spokesperson has since confirmed to Fortune that the company intends to keep Chrome OS around for the foreseeable future, and is still pursuing Chromebook partnerships, specifically in education.

Despite assurances (likely aimed to calm the fears among current and potential partners), doing away with Chrome OS in favor of Android isn’t such a bad idea because of how successful Android has become.  If anything, it’s a move that’s been foreshadowed for the past two years. First with Google adding the ability to run Android apps on Chrome OS, and second with Chrome OS adopting a more touch-friendly interface in 2-in–1 Chromebooks that can be transformed into something akin to a tablet.

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