Google’s Newest OS is Designed to Capture a $19 Trillion Opportunity

alphabet-googl-logoGoogle parent Alphabet Inc (NASDAQ:GOOGL) is working on a brand new operating system that has nothing to do with Android or Chrome OS — so what is it for?

The operating system, dubbed “Fuchsia,” is a departure from other OS’s Google has created to date, in the sense that it isn’t based on Linux. Linux is a decades-old system that’s been used in computers for many years, but isn’t ideal for every situation.

From Android Police:

Especially in the case of embedded devices like car dashboards or GPS units, full-blown desktop kernels like Linux impact performance and cause other issues. There’s a massive ecosystem of operating systems designed for embedded hardware, and Google may be working on their own.

Enter “Fuchsia.” Google’s own description for it on the project’s GitHub page is simply, “Pink + Purple == Fuchsia (a new Operating System)”. Not very revealing, is it? When you begin to dig deeper into Fuchsia’s documentation, everything starts to make a little more sense.

Looking under the hood of the not-so-secret project reveals Fuschia is designed to replace commercial operating systems that run on embedded devices — which are usually small computers designed for a specific purpose, like running your washing machine or HVAC system. These systems are part of The Internet of Things (IoT), a concept describing a rapidly evolving future where nearly every household or business device is connected to the internet.

Cisco has called the IoT a $19 trillion opportunity for hardware markers, software companies, and device manufacturers. Google wants in on that massive market badly, and this looks to be one of its biggest steps yet.

Google is already involved in the IoT in a handful of other ventures. Back in 2014, it bought connected thermostat maker Nest Labs for $3.2 billion, which then bought internet video surveillance company Dropcam. The company also offers a cloud platform for developers to integrate IoT devices.

The company has been known to experiment with many things over the years, so time will tell if Fuschia evolves into a big hit, a flop, or something else entirely. Even replacing Android or Chrome OS (or both) with the new operating system isn’t out of the question.

For now, Google isn’t talking, but it promises some documentation for the open-source project soon.

Alphabet shares rose +1.26 (+0.16%) in premarket trading Monday to $808.31. GOOGL has gained 3.73% year-to-date, versus a return by the benchmark S&P 500 index during the same time period.


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