Well, it had to happen eventually. Google have just announced their latest project: Google Chrome OS.

You can’t download it just yet, but we can expect to see products (initially netbooks) running it next year:

Google Chrome OS is an open source, lightweight operating system that will initially be targeted at netbooks. Later this year we will open-source its code, and netbooks running Google Chrome OS will be available for consumers in the second half of 2010. Because we’re already talking to partners about the project, and we’ll soon be working with the open source community, we wanted to share our vision now so everyone understands what we are trying to achieve.

Running on a Linux kernel, the Google Chrome OS will have its own windowing system, optimised to run the Chrome browser, and the browser alone. The web will be the development platform. Google don’t want users to have to worry about viruses, malware and security updates – “It should just work”. Sound familiar?

Expect to see the source code later this year.