Google’s Chrome OS upgrade changes are a solid start

Well, I’ll be: Just over a month after we talked about how Google needed to rethink its Chrome OS upgrade standard, the company has quietly launched a new effort to improve the state of Chromebook software updates.

Now, don’t get too excited yet. This is a small start, to be sure — but it’s at least an acknowledgment that the Chrome OS upgrade situation could and should be better. And that’s a pretty significant step.

Before we get into what’s changing, let’s back up for a quick second to set the stage — because context really is everything in this situation. After all, Chrome OS upgrades are by and large commendable — particularly compared to how upgrades play out over on the Android side of the Google operating system fence. The reason’s simple: Given the close manner in which Google controls Chrome OS and the lack of flexibility it gives device-makers in modifying the software, the company’s able to provide a completely consistent experience from one Chromebook to the next. And as a result, Google itself is able to handle all Chrome OS software updates directly, which means every device gets ’em at more or less the same time — no matter who made the hardware.

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