When Google’s Chromebook line came out a few years ago, the initial consensus was that they were pretty useless, as it required a constant internet connection to operate – which made working on a plane impossible. Since the early days, Chrome OS has come a long way, it can now run offline apps, it can run full Android apps and games and now Chromebooks will soon be able to run Linux apps.
Below is what Kan Liu, who is the product manager for the Chrome OS said to VentureBeat today regarding how they got Chrome OS to support native Linux applications.
“We put the Linux app environment within a security sandbox, running inside a virtual machine. We made sure the user experience is seamless to the user. Whether you use a web app, whether you are using an Android app, or whether you are using a Linux app, the window treatment and the way you launch the app from the launcher is the same.”
Kan Liu, Director of Product Management for Chrome OS
With this new integration, developers can now use Chromebooks to write and run Linux apps and also use Android Studio to make and test Android apps. Until this new support, Android developers would have had to use Mac, Windows or full blown Linux machines in order to make and test apps for the platform.
Support is limited when it does launch, the Pixelbook which is sold by Google will be the only device to offer support. This is probably due to the fact that the Pixelbook has a very powerful CPU and quite a bit of RAM. Google does say however that support for other Chrome OS devices will come soon.