Google plans to release Chrome OS operating system as a free alternative to Microsoft’s Windows and Apple OS operating systems. Chrome OS will be released as an open-source during 2010. The question is how does Google plan to make money with an open-source OS?
Google CEO Eric Schmidt has been talking to the financial analysts during the second-quarter 2009 earnings conference call on July 16.
“We do not plan to charge for it, in an open-source form. There may be other ways we can make money from it. If our platform strategy works, and there are many users of Chrome OS, there will be many opportunities to build profitable services on top of the platform. That’s been true for all of the successful platform plays in the history of computing. If it’s not successful, then it won’t really matter.”
Some of the options Google has to monetize Chrome OS are to have ad-supported and subscription-based services for the applications built on the operating system. Already today, major share of Google’s revenue comes from display advertising.
Cloud computing software like Evernote is already using this model and is experimenting with serving ads within the software and has a premium subscription option as a way to make money.
“We do things that are strategic because they get people to use the Internet in a clever way. They will search more, watch more on YouTube, and we know our ads work in a targeted way. We do not require each and every product to be profitable or not profitable”.