Jolicloud may beat Chrome OS to netbook market

This month, startup plans to release a cloud-focused netbook using its own Linux-based operating system.

Google's Chrome OS may be ultimately intended to run on cloud-focused netbooks when it comes out, but as of yesterday it looks like a small, startup competitor could beat the search giant to the proverbial punch.

Paris-based Jolicloud, which makes its own cloud-focused operating system based on Linux, has confirmed that it plans to release a netbook computer of its own this month in the U.K. using that open source operating system, according to a report on TechCrunch. Dubbed the "Jolibook", the forthcoming netbook will run version 1.1 of the Jolicloud OS, which is based on Ubuntu.

The device will come preloaded with Facebook, Spotify, VLC, Skype and -- interestingly -- Chromium. Based on a dual-core Atom N550 processor, it will also sport a 250GB hard drive, a "gorgeous" screen and an "affordable" (though as yet unspecified) price, according to reports.

Other notable details to emerge so far include the fact that the device is HTML5-based, will include a VGA port and multiple USB ports, and that it will be able to play 720p video, according to TechCrunch. There's no mention of the Jolibook on Jolicloud's site yet, but photos of the new machine are available on Flickr.

Ubuntu 10.04

Though the current release of Jolicloud is version 1.0, the forthcoming 1.1 upgrade will resynchronize the software's back-end operating system with Ubuntu 10.04, or Lucid Lynx, which is the most current Long-Term Support (LTS) version of Canonical's Linux distribution.

The cloud-focused operating system's front end, meanwhile, leverages HTML5 technologies on top of the Chromium browser. With support for "exotic" components including Nvidia ION, Intel Poulsbo and touch-screens -- and by enhancing support for the latest CPU hardware -- Jolicloud aims to make version 1.1 of its namesake operating system an excellent choice for all types of computers, not just netbooks, it says.

GNOME and X11

Other components of Jolicloud 1.1 will include version 2.6.35.4 of the Linux kernel; X11R7.5; GNOME, Nautilus, and Metacity 2.30; and the Plymouth boot-up theme. Chromium 7.0, VLC 1.1.4, Dropbox 0.6.3, Abiword 2.8.2, Banshee 1.6.1, Firefox 3.6.10, Gimp 2.6.8, Miro 3.0.1 and OpenOffice.org 3.2.1 are also planned for inclusion.

For now, Jolicloud 1.0 can be downloaded for free from the company's site.

Given the rise of Android -- and, indeed, tablets -- it's net yet clear what role cloud-focused netbooks may play for either businesses or consumers, or how Google's Chrome OS will fit in. Still, it's exciting to see another Linux-based contender potentially beating Google at its own declared game. If nothing else, Jolicloud is definitely one to watch.

Follow Katherine Noyes on Twitter: @Noyesk.

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags unixLinuxjolicloudGooglesoftwarenon-Windowsoperating systemscloud computinginternetnetbook

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Katherine Noyes

PC World (US online)
Show Comments

Essentials

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?