The announcement of ChromeOS Flex by Google earlier this year, despite its zigzag stitch at the time, provided a sustainable method of reusing obsolete PCs and Macs. Since then, a lot of bugs have been fixed in the software, and it is now ready for a wider use.
Today, Google said that more than 400 devices have been supported to work with ChromeOS Flex, a cloud-first iteration of ChromeOS that prevents outdated hardware from ending up in landfills. Furthermore, Google pledges to bring on board more devices.
As Google has been testing and confirming devices from Acer, Asus, Dell, HP, Lenovo, LG, and Toshiba, among other OEMs, ChromeOS Flex is primarily intended for enterprises operating outdated Windows PCs. Even some older Macs, such as some MacBooks from 10 years ago, can run Flex OS.
Google also highlights the software’s improvements in energy efficiency. According to this, ChromeOS Flex uses on average 19% less energy than other operating systems. The software experience on Chromebooks is also available on ChromeOS Flex. The Google Assistant, Family Link accounts, Smart Lock, Instant Tethering, and Nearby Share are supported by this thin operating system. It differs from Chrome OS in that it works with a variety of PCs and Macs, making it the ideal option for businesses or anyone with obsolete hardware.
Furthermore, when a ransomware attack forced the closure of Nordic Choice Hotels’ operations earlier this year, the company showed off Chrome OS Flex’s proactive security features. Using Chrome OS Flex, the company changed 2,000 PCs in 200 hotels in Scandinavia to Chrome OS machines in less than 48 hours. This allowed them to get back important data from the PCs.
Setting up ChromeOS Flex
All you need is a USB drive for deployment, which is simple. You can boot and run from the USB to test it out before installing Chrome OS Flex on your device. You can click this link to download the Flex OS. To manage all of your eligible devices from the Google Admin console, Google is also offering a Chrome Enterprise Upgrade. There is a 30-day trial period; however, the upgrade is not cost-free.
Commenting on the launch, Thomas Riedl, Director of Product, Enterprise and Education, Google, said
Today, we’re excited to announce that ChromeOS Flex, the cloud-first, easy-to-manage, and fast operating system for PCs and Macs, is now ready for your fleet. Just like too much sun, software bloat, clunky hardware, and security vulnerabilities can cause unwanted damage. Thankfully, ChromeOS Flex is just the sunscreen your legacy devices need. And thanks to everyone who has participated in our early access program, we’ve been able to significantly improve the product in many areas while continuously certifying devices to run ChromeOS Flex.