In the future, Chromebooks may be powered by Google’s own CPUs: According to Nikkei Asia, the company is developing processors for Chrome OS-powered laptops and tablets in-house. It’s not such a far-fetched story, seeing as the tech giant recently announced its own mobile chip called Tensor that’s slated to debut on the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro. Google hired chip engineers from around the world for that endeavor, including talents from its suppliers like Intel and Qualcomm. The company may have decided to use their expertise to work on a processor for Chromebooks, as well.
Nikkei says the tech giant was inspired by the success of its rival when it comes to developing its own chips for the iPhone, iPad and, most recently, Mac computers. The first Macs and iPad Pros powered by Apple’s M1 processor launched in 2020, while the first iMacs with the chip became available earlier this year. Google’s in-progress Chromebook chip is reportedly based on designs from Softbank’s ARM, like most mobile processors out there. By building the processor itself, the company will be able to customize it to meet its needs and to add its own features. It’ll lessen Google’s reliance on third-party suppliers, in other words, allowing it to control production as it sees fit.
Google plans to release the processors it’s developing for Chromebooks in 2023, Nikkei says. The first devices powered by the chips could be available soon after.
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