Google Chrome browser on Sony Vaio notebooks

Tuesday, September 1, 2009, 19:28 by Tech Correspondent

Google Chrome browsers will come with Sony Vaio laptops. Google announced this today. Sony Vaio will be the first computers to come preloaded with Google Chrome, the browser from software giant Google.

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Google Chrome, launched exactly a year back, is known for the speed with which loads webpages. However, despite its good credentials, Google Chrome has not been able to make much gains in terms of market share. Currently, among all the internet browsers available, Internet Explorer from Microsoft has the largest market share, used by three-fourths (or 67%) of all internet users. Its is followed by the open-source browser Firefox from Mozilla with over 22%. Google Chrome is the third-runner, used only by 3 users out of 100. Still, according to Google executive Matt Cutts, this is a good market share for an upstar browser. Moreover, he says the debut of Google Chrome has prompted other browser-makers to get their act together and make faster browsers.

“Users’ response to Google Chrome has been outstanding, and we’re continuing to explore ways to make Chrome accessible to even more people,” Google said in a statement.

Until now, Sony computers including Vaios, come with Microsoft’s Internet Explorer. Others like Dell and H-P too preload Internet Explorer while shipping their computers. This ensures a captive user base for the Microsoft Internet Explorer, since few users bother to download other browsers and replace Internet Explorer.

Many computer manufacturers have shied away from installing Chrome, or other free browsers like Mozilla Firefox, Opera and Safari for fear of antagonising Microsoft. However, the latest move by Sony to pre-install Google Chrome with their notebook computers may prompt more PC-makers to give Google Chrome browser with their machines. The move is a coup for Google, since it may prompt other computer makers ti consider using Google Chrome with their laptops and desktop computers. For Microsoft, the challenge will be to ensure that the trickle of PC makers switching to free browsers does not become an avalanche, threatening its large market share over the browser market.

Google has been steadily raiding the Microsoft territory in the last couple of years. Google has launched Google Docs, (which can read all Microsoft formats like Word and Excel) Google Chrome, a snappy rival to on Internet Explorer and Android, a direct hit on Windows Mobile from Microsoft. Recently, Google announced that it plans to launch an open source operating system to be called Chrome OS, the biggest challenge to Microsoft’s Windows operating system. Google said that the current operating systems in the market – a swipe at Microsoft Windows – were made before the advent of the internet, and that the current market requires an entirely new operating system.

According to a Cnet report, the Sony-Google deal on preloading Google Chrome on Vaio netbooks also opens up another possibility – that Sony may ship future laptops and netbooks with the upcoming Google Chrome operating system.

Meanwhile, Opera today released a version of its browser Opera – the Opera 10. More on it elsewhere on this site.

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