So, Google has released its browser. And if you are one who is wondering why Google released yet another browser when developers are struggling to cope with the four different ones that are already in the market, welcome to the club.
It isn't that the users are going to be benefited either. There aren't many features in Chrome that aren't in the IE8 Beta. For instance, both run tabs in separate processes. Both have a private browsing mode, and both consume tons of memory. Further, IE8 while being standards-compliant, also has a IE7 mode for sites that won't comply by the time the browser is released.
Nor will Google's clientele necessarily switch to Chrome. From what I know, techies who would be the ones that download and use Chrome nearly never click on ads, while non-techies are generally happy with their default browser, be it IE or Safari. Yes, the percentage of techies who use Google Docs/Spreadsheets may have a better user experience, but again, unless they click on ads, how does Google benefit?
Here is my take on the "how". This is Google's first step towards world domination. I'd written earlier (see the comments) that all Google needed after Docs and Spreadsheets was an OS and a browser that they can ship as default on systems. Not only would you then use Google software, but all your data would be on Google servers, making them indispensable. In addition to really hitting MS revenue sources, this will insulate Google from the low cost of switching that plagues its services.
Welcome, folks, to chrome-plated world domination!
(PS: Needless to say, and like every other post on this blog, this post only reflects my views and should not be construed as being that of my current/previous/future employers.)