Google CEO Eric Schmidt has revealed new details regarding the upcoming Chrome OS based netbooks, including some of the thought processes behind the development of the web-centric platform and what price tags he expects to see hardware land with. According to Schmidt, "the price points you should think about are the current netbook pricings which are 300 dollar, 400 dollar price points," figures he points out that are led by manufacturers and are predominantly derived from the cost of processors, glass and other components.
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However, while Chrome OS carries no software cost, there is an associated price in bringing software up to speed. Schmidt admitted that even Google "found applications that were part of our business; operations, sales, accounting so forth" which they had to translate into the "perfect web app."
As for why Google decided to get into the netbook OS business, Schmidt says that, rather than just search, the company is all about information and sharing, something that traditional software can't manage in the same way. Google intend to use their GData protocol hooked into their webapps, and are planning for the point - 5 or 10 years down the line - where mobile devices like smartphones are just as capable as traditional desk-bound hardware, with users swapping data via the cloud.