Google Tries to Chrome the Enterprise

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While its possible Google knows something I don’t, as someone who’s spent a fair chunk of my career building software for the enterprise their latest attempt to ratchet themselves into that market seems somewhat naive.

The premise is that 74% of all businesses still use Windows XP, which isn’t supported by the upcoming IE9. They see this as a prime market then for their Chrome IE Plugin to add HTML5 support.  While they’re absolutely correct that XP is still dominant in that world, the reason for that is the same reason that every web developer’s nightmare — IE6 — is still very much alive and kicking: the cost of updating core software like the OS and browser is prohibitively high. In a large organization, even deploying patches is problematic. A big part of the reason why Microsoft instituted “Patch Tuesday” was to make it easier for corporate customers to plan and schedule patch deployments to their possibly hundreds of thousands of client machines. The potential amount of downtime for end-users (and corresponding IT costs) if an existing application breaks is huge, so any major and sometimes minor changes to users’ computers need to be carefully tested and approved before they’re added to the standard environment. Tossing a browser-within-a-browser plugin into the mix doesn’t really seem like a real bang for my buck just to get a swanky new video tag.

I’m not saying it won’t get used — there’s always that uber-techie IT guy that manages to sneak a few Linux file servers into the mix — but with predictions that enterprises will be deploying Windows 7 on up to 83% of new machines by this time next year, it seems like Google’s niche is already making its way into the ether.

About Dan Drew

Dan has worked in the software industry for almost 15 years as a developer, architect and manager at industry leaders such as Delrina, Microsoft and MySpace. The results of his work are used by millions of users in the home, corporate, and Internet markets.
This entry was posted in Development, Software, Technology, Windows. Bookmark the permalink.

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