Dixons says Chrome OS will combat the threat of tablets and establish itself in the 2012 market
Google Chromebooks will account for one in ten sales this time next year, according to the UK’s largest electronic retailer, Dixons.
The claims, made by Dixon Retail’s computing category director Mark Slater, should provide some encouragement to Google, whose Chrome OS has so far failed to capture the imagination of consumers.
Chrome OS is based on Google’s popular Chrome web browser and is designed to emphasise speed and interaction with the cloud. The Samsung Chromebook hit UK shelves this year, but the platform has been hampered by a lack of appealing laptops.
However retailers say that Chromebooks sell well when they are explained to customers and new devices are expected to debut in January at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas.
“We see computing evolving as we go into next year with the emergence of Chrome as an operating system and the ease of use of cloud storage making it a credible alternative to the established world of Microsoft and Apple,” Slater told the Telegraph. “We’ve seen the rapid growth and significant share which Android has as an operating system in the smartphone and tablet space. As such it’s not inconceivable for Google to push Chrome much harder before the arrival of Windows 8 next autumn.”
Slater also reiterated his belief that Chrome OS could eventually be used for enterprise computing, “Growth here will depend on applications and integration with IT services, which although are more complex are certainly an opportunity.”
However this view is disputed by some who believe that Chromebooks are unsuitable for such uses due to their high cost, silent updates and constant Wi-Fi access, while others maintain that they will not play a major role in the post-PC world.
Chromebook faces stiff competition from Windows and tablets, an area in which Google is increasing its influence with Android tablets now accounting for 27 percent of the market. However Google recently announced its plans to combat such threats with a price cut just in time for Christmas.