Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Google's HTML 5 - the netbook chromestellation platform

It’s been a few months since I’ve last written about the netbook chromestellation platform (Google Chrome + Netscape Constellation 1996). There’s been little of interest on the netbook side, except that Microsoft has successfully executed their only logical response – make XP effectively free on the Netbook. Price points have not yet fallen into the truly disruptive range.

On the software side though, we now have Google’s technology preview from their I/O conference: Google I/O - Google's HTML 5 Work: What's Next?.

One surprise is what a large role Apple has played. Clearly they made the right strategic choice when they split from Mozilla to create Safari/WebKit and introduced Canvas. Apple and Google are precisely aligned now, and both are pushing the vision of a browser as a technology platform. (From a very different direction, so is Palm.)

Another surprise is that the standards groups have abandoned the slow pace of seven years ago and resumed the 1990s model of adopting whatever the leaders are doing. HTML “5” today is nothing like HTML “5” of 2004.

It’s everyone against Microsoft now, rather than the 1990s Sun vs. Netscape vs. Microsoft battle (Microsoft hardly had to lift a finger in that one – Netscape and Sun killed one another). If you add the EU in then maybe it’s almost a fair fight, but Microsoft is immensely profitable and Windows 7 is due*.

So now we wait for the Google branded Cloud-powered $150 HTML 5 netbook

* Windows 7 will sell so much hardware and software, it might inflate .com bubble 2.0.

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