Acer is reportedly preparing to launch a netbook that runs both Windows and the Google Android operating system as soon as next month. Digitimes reports that this will make Acer the first major computer maker to bring an Android-powered netbook to market, even if it’s possible that some users will never boot into Google’s operating system, first designed for cellphones.
Acer first announced plans to develop a dual boot Windows/Android netbook at Computex in June. While Android is available to PC and cellphone makers for free, it’s not really optimized to run on netbooks. A number of companies do seem to be porting full desktop applications like the Firefox web browser to run on Android netbooks. But rather than ship a new computer with an operating system that hasn’t really been market tested, Acer is taking the safe route and shipping a dual boot system first.
If Android proves popular with consumers, perhaps we’ll see cheaper Android-only powered machines from Acer down the road. Or maybe this’ll be a one-of-a-kind deal and the next Google-powered Acer product will be running Google Chrome Operating System. Unlike Android, which is designed to run local and web applications on cellphones, the recently announced Chrome OS is designed specifically for netbooks and is expected to primarily to run web applications.