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Google is now testing its mysterious new Fuchsia OS on the Pixelbook. Fuchsia can be booted into the Pixelbook but you’ll need a second device and a disposable USB device.
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Fuchsia is the name of an operating system Google has been working on since 2016. It was previously reported that the system was going to run on multiple devices from smartphones to now being able to be installed on the Pixelbook.
Fuchsia Now Running On Pixelbook
Google hasn’t released any information about Fuchsia, as most of the information comes from slow leaks of the project. Chrome Unboxed reveals that Google released documentation for developers to load Fuchsia on the Pixelbook.
To load the operating system, developers will need two machines — a host and a target device. It will require the OS to use a USB boot process. To install the OS, developer mode will need to be activated on Chrome OS and it is destructive to the USB device used in the process.
Fuchsia’s testing was previously expanded to Intel’s NUC and Acer’s Switch Alpha 12 Chromebooks. These were the only two supported devices until recently.
What’s Known About Fuchsia So Far
Fuchsia is the first operating system entirely built by Google. Unlike its previous OS, Android and Chrome, it was created from the Google-developed Zircon microkernel instead of the Linux kernel. It’s open-sourced, which means developers will help build and test the OS.
Google added Fuchsia support to Apple’s Swift, an open-source programming language. This doesn’t mean that Fuchsia will be able to run iOS apps, but it means that developers that create those apps will be able to port them easily over to Fuchsia.
When it was first launched it had no user interface. This was later corrected when Google added its Armadillo UI. Armadillo is built on Google’s Flutter SDK, which uses Google’s Dart programming language.
With all of the information coming out about the OS, no one is really sure what its use is going to be. Google’s Zircon kernel is designed to be able to scale from IoT devices, to smartphones to laptops. It isn’t clear what Google’s intentions may be in making the OS. There’s even speculation that the company has no idea what to do with it either.
There is speculation that this project is the successor to Google’s Andromeda project. Andromeda was supposed to combine the Android and Chrome OS on Google’s Pixel laptop. This never materialized, Google instead announced support for Android apps on Chrome.
Google will continue working on the OS. One of the biggest clues as to its future seems to be its role with IoT devices. Adding development for the Pixelbook adds more mystery to what Google will do with Fuchsia.
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