Google Inc is preparing to launch an operating system for personal computers next year, taking direct aim at the dominance of Microsoft Corp's Windows franchise.
Called the Google Chrome Operating System, the new software will be targeted at netbook computers and be fast and lightweight, enabling users to access the Web in a few seconds, Google said in a statement on Tuesday.
Netbooks running the new operating system -- based on open-source Linux code -- will be available for consumers in the second half of 2010, Google said, adding it was working with multiple manufacturers.
Google also said Google Chrome OS was a new project, separate from its Android mobile operating software found in smartphones.
All web-based applications will automatically work and new applications can be written using your favorite web technologies, Sundar Pichai, vice president of product management at Google, said in a Google blog.
(Reporting by Alexei Oreskovic; Writing by Tiffany Wu; Editing by Dan Lalor)