Google Chrome OS Needs These Five New Features

We are visiting our daughter and her family this week and we brought two toys with us. One is my wife’s Apple iPad and the other is my Cr-48 test notebook running the Google Chrome OS. Before I begin, let me state that I am not sure if the OS on my Cr-48 will be the same Chrome OS used on the Chromebooks soon to be released. I would venture a guess that they will be fairly close in functionality.

Last evening I let my son-in-law take the Cr-48 for a spin to see what he thought of the Google Chrome OS. Some of his observations were similar to mine about what needs to be improved upon.

Where is the taskbar? Most of us were raised on Windows and by habit, go to the bottom of the screen looking for the taskbar. Google may wish to add this feature in future versions.

What good is the Chromebook without an Internet connection? My thoughts as well. If I can’t work on my Google Docs offline, the Chromebooks will be extremely limited and could affect their popularity as an alternative to Windows.

The built-in file manager Google added needs improvement. I slipped in a memory card, which the system immediately recognized. I tried downloading a file, which worked fine, but I was unable to transfer the downloaded file over to the memory card.

Where is the context menu? We need the ability to right-click and select cut, copy, and paste in Google Docs. The Control C, V keys work OK, but again, for those of us coming from Windows, I am constantly right clicking and expecting to see these commands.

When will Chrome OS get a real app store? The Chrome Web Store, though improved as of late, still lacks the sophistication of Apple iTunes and the apps Apple offers.

All of the above, though some are not directly a part of the Chrome OS itself, will make the Chrome OS experience what it needs to be. It appears to me that Google is going to release the Chromebooks with promises of improvements down the road. This in itself could make the Chromebook a hard sell.

I let my son-in-law try the Apple iPad and make a comparison to the Cr-48. After comparing the two, his opinion was that the Apple iPad was more useful. Useful? I found that statement odd because, for what I do, I find the Cr-48 more useful and the Apple iPad more fun. This proves something that I already knew.

Chromebooks are going to be used mainly by people who need to complete a work task, whether at a business or in a school environment. Apple iPads are more for fun for surfing the Internet and putting work aside. We have all heard the old saying, comparing apples to oranges. This adage holds more truth today since the Apple iPad and Google Chromebooks are complete opposites in function and the tasks they perform best.

Article Written by

I have been writing for LockerGnome since relocating to Missouri seven years ago, where I continue to be a technology enthusiast who enjoys playing with the newest and latest gadgets.

  • http://www.anthonyguidetti.com Anthony Guidetti

    You can right click, you just have to use two fingers and click. I disagree with a taskbar on Chrome OS, even being a Windows user. Chrome has to be its own thing, it shouldn’t act like something it isn’t.

    • michaelpalecek

      Chrome should be its own thing, but it does need something like the task bar or even the applications bar (not sure what it is called) on a Mac or the task bar in Linux. The user needs something to show what is running and to switch between tasks

      • Monkinto Master

        It’s called the dock on os x and yes I have to agree with you on that one

  • http://www.anthonyguidetti.com Anthony Guidetti

    You can right click, you just have to use two fingers and click. I disagree with a taskbar on Chrome OS, even being a Windows user. Chrome has to be its own thing, it shouldn’t act like something it isn’t.

    • michaelpalecek

      Chrome should be its own thing, but it does need something like the task bar or even the applications bar (not sure what it is called) on a Mac or the task bar in Linux. The user needs something to show what is running and to switch between tasks

      • Monkinto Master

        It’s called the dock on os x and yes I have to agree with you on that one

    • michaelpalecek

      Chrome should be its own thing, but it does need something like the task bar or even the applications bar (not sure what it is called) on a Mac or the task bar in Linux. The user needs something to show what is running and to switch between tasks

    • michaelpalecek

      Chrome should be its own thing, but it does need something like the task bar or even the applications bar (not sure what it is called) on a Mac or the task bar in Linux. The user needs something to show what is running and to switch between tasks

  • http://www.youtube.co.uk/illage2 illage2

    I fully agree with all the featuresd that Chrome OS needs. This is the first blog post that I have encountered that mentions the issue of needing a constant internet connection.

  • http://www.youtube.co.uk/illage2 illage2

    I fully agree with all the featuresd that Chrome OS needs. This is the first blog post that I have encountered that mentions the issue of needing a constant internet connection.

  • http://profiles.google.com/jimcullenaus Jim Cullen

    1) Taskbar? The whole idea of this is to make it as simple as possible to access the web. It works exactly as the Chrome browser does now, there’s no need for a taskbar. Your tabs are as close as you need.
    2) It’s a feature that is coming very soon, but I agree, without pretty good offline support for email, docs, etc., there are some major flaws in using a Chromebook.
    3) I haven’t used one, but another commenter says they do have context menus, how you could have missed this (if he’s right) is beyond me. If it indeed doesn’t have context menus (which I seriously doubt), then you’re right, that’s a feature that is MUCH needed.
    5) I don’t quite understand why you need a better store. From what I’ve seen of the current Chrome Web Store in the Chrome browser, it seems brilliant. Search works very nicely, and they have a very simple interface for finding various categories, featured apps, etc.

  • http://zagorath.wordpress.com Zagorath

    1) Taskbar? The whole idea of this is to make it as simple as possible to access the web. It works exactly as the Chrome browser does now, there’s no need for a taskbar. Your tabs are as close as you need.
    2) It’s a feature that is coming very soon, but I agree, without pretty good offline support for email, docs, etc., there are some major flaws in using a Chromebook.
    3) I haven’t used one, but another commenter says they do have context menus, how you could have missed this (if he’s right) is beyond me. If it indeed doesn’t have context menus (which I seriously doubt), then you’re right, that’s a feature that is MUCH needed.
    5) I don’t quite understand why you need a better store. From what I’ve seen of the current Chrome Web Store in the Chrome browser, it seems brilliant. Search works very nicely, and they have a very simple interface for finding various categories, featured apps, etc.

  • http://twitter.com/cnctNow Ben Anderson

    I have a couple of issues with this. Right click only works if you have a two button mouse…something that Chromebooks won’t likely have. The task bar is at the top…the tabs act as your “task bar” showing you the open items and are much easier to manage than a “windows” system. In fact you can still pan between windows with specific tabs at the push of a button. The App Store isreally quite clean and seamless. Offline gmail, docs, games, calendar, is a basic function of Chrome OS and will be more ubiquitous in coming months. Moving files between the download and file manager system is really easy. Drag and drop. The persistent pop-up tiles at the bottom of the screen allow drag and drop and you can move between them really easily. It’s also easy to open them in the browser and then grab the file in the Omni box and drag it to the folder you want. Frankly the only thing the Chrome OS is need of right now is a solid media player. I need to be able to use this thing to play videos on an SD card, or music I download. It would also help to have a dedicated “cloud” folder that I could call my “C” drive and download all of my files to rather than a GDocs, GMusic, YouTube, Box.net, Picassa, Flickr, etc…that require me to open up and enter passwords for half a dozen different storage urls. Even if this system was just a storage place for bookmarks that open up those Web Apps with the associated document/file without any need to sign in to said Web App. Chrome OS takes some getting used to and will require a learning curve of sorts. Although I see this system being the best system for average users in the long term, in the short term Google has some things to fine tune. That’s what the Beta program is about. I suspect the Chromebooks in the pipeline right now are more polished than the CR48’s out there right now which is a shame but I see that changing relatively soon.

  • http://twitter.com/cnctNow Ben Anderson

    I have a couple of issues with this. Right click only works if you have a two button mouse…something that Chromebooks won’t likely have. The task bar is at the top…the tabs act as your “task bar” showing you the open items and are much easier to manage than a “windows” system. In fact you can still pan between windows with specific tabs at the push of a button. The App Store isreally quite clean and seamless. Offline gmail, docs, games, calendar, is a basic function of Chrome OS and will be more ubiquitous in coming months. Moving files between the download and file manager system is really easy. Drag and drop. The persistent pop-up tiles at the bottom of the screen allow drag and drop and you can move between them really easily. It’s also easy to open them in the browser and then grab the file in the Omni box and drag it to the folder you want. Frankly the only thing the Chrome OS is need of right now is a solid media player. I need to be able to use this thing to play videos on an SD card, or music I download. It would also help to have a dedicated “cloud” folder that I could call my “C” drive and download all of my files to rather than a GDocs, GMusic, YouTube, Box.net, Picassa, Flickr, etc…that require me to open up and enter passwords for half a dozen different storage urls. Even if this system was just a storage place for bookmarks that open up those Web Apps with the associated document/file without any need to sign in to said Web App. Chrome OS takes some getting used to and will require a learning curve of sorts. Although I see this system being the best system for average users in the long term, in the short term Google has some things to fine tune. That’s what the Beta program is about. I suspect the Chromebooks in the pipeline right now are more polished than the CR48’s out there right now which is a shame but I see that changing relatively soon.

  • Wvpspdude

    You people begging for a taskbar need to realize that THIS WILL NEVER BE A WINDOWS OPERATING SYSTEM. If you want a taskbar then you should just stick with Windows.