To challenge Windows-powered laptops, Google has teamed up with Microsoft's biggest partner, Dell, to launch new Chromebook Enterprise devices.
They both are working together to make new versions of the Latitude 5400, starting at $699 and Dell Latitude 5300 two-in-one, starting at $819, with an enterprise version of Chrome OS built-in.
In addition, the search engine giant is now teaming up with a number of Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) to better target enterprise customers. While Dell is the first OEM to announce Chromebook Enterprise laptops, there will be more, John Solomon, Vice President of Chrome OS at Google said.
Meanwhile, to compete with Chrome OS, Microsoft is currently working on a Windows Lite version of its operating system which would be more cloud-powered.
Speaking to The Verge, Solomon, explained the deal. “This is not an exclusive with Dell. We're launching with Dell first… but in the future we will be getting back to doing this more broadly with the ecosystem.”
Elaborating on how the enterprise business differs from the consumer one, Solomon said, “Enterprise is more of a marathon than a sprint. For Google this is a key moment for us to really telegraph that we're very serious about the enterprise. This is not just a project that's ‘well you know it's like an experiment, we'll see how it goes.' This is a long term and serious commitment.”
Detailing some benefits of Chrome OS, he added, ”There's a reason there's not been malware attacks or viruses on Chromebooks, it's a very tough surface for any bad actor to penetrate. I would imagine Microsoft are going to try to modernize their operating system and bring it to where IT is going, but they have the problem of legacy and we don't.”