Glide Beats Chrome OS – And Turns IE Into An OS

Darryl K. Taft covers IBM, big data and a number of other topics for TechWeekEurope and eWeek

Transmedia has stolen a march on Google’s Chrome OS with Glide, which turns Internet Explorer into a browser OS with its own storage

Months before the full availability of Google’s Chrome operating system (OS), the new version of TransMedia’s Glide turns Microsoft Internet Explorer into an OS.

Version 4 of Glide, announced in November “effectively transforms the Microsoft Internet Explorer into a browser OS [operating system] with a complete application suite fully compatible with Microsoft Office and 20GB of free storage,” according to a release from Transmedia, which has made the softare available for download.

As part of its overall package, Glide delivers capabilities to IE that include: “automated data capture and file synchronization to speak with multiple remote Windows, Mac and Linux desktops, automated file translation so that Microsoft formats are automatically compatible with other file formats, a rights-based file management system, a word processor, presentation app, spreadsheet, photo editor, e-mail client, online meeting app, drawing tool, Web publishing app, contact manager, calendar and much more.”

“Glide’s compatible and integrated platform is designed to free your data from hardware replacement and software upgrade schemes, to move your data freely between your desktops and the Web and to collaborate with others regardless of device, OS or software,” said Donald Leka, chairman and CEO of TransMedia.

In essence, TransMedia said, “Glide transforms virtually any major browser into an OS.” The company also said, “Glide makes it possible for users to work without latency by using native apps on their local desktops and automatically syncing data when bandwidth is available.” And it said, “Glide is designed to run on Windows, Mac, Linux, Solaris, Android, BlackBerry, iPhone, Palm Pre, Symbian and Windows Mobile and to automatically translate file formats between platforms based on automated device identification and file transcoding.”

The company describes Glide as a conduit between the desktop, the browser and the cloud. According to the TransMedia statement, “Glide lives on your desktop, in your browser and in the cloud accessible from virtually any mobile phone or desktop. Glide creates a two-way automated corridor of data from any location on the Web through your browser to your desktop, automatically capturing and translating Web pages and multiple search results into files that can be synchronized, accessed and edited on all of your devices.”

Meanwhile, despite continued growth in adoption of netbooks, TransMedia officials said, “Netbooks and other midsized devices have for the most part failed to meet a clearly defined need for most consumers and business users.” Moreover, the company said it expects that cell phones and laptops will remain the primary devices used to get online.

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Thus, “In the first half of 2010, Glide will release a bootable version of the Glide OS for Netbooks, making it possible to launch the Glide OS at startup,” TransMedia said. “The Glide Netbook OS will provide a unified desktop, file management system, a comprehensive suite of native versions of the Glide Application Suite, offline access to your communication and collaboration suite, and data capture and sync technology to provide a cost-effective alternative to Windows for specialized niche markets like health care and education.”