Google quietly bought Neverware. The company has created a variant of Chrome OS, called CloudReady, which turns old Windows PCs into Chrome OS machines.
CloudReady might be the perfect answer for those who continue to use, say, Windows 7 PCs, although Microsoft has stopped providing free fixes since January. It’s important to note that CloudReady always receives patches and fixes, just like Chrome OS, made available every six weeks.
CloudReady is typically offered to schools to bring old PCs back to life, with G Suite for Education. The devices are managed through the Google admin console. But businesses and individuals can also use it.
Neverware joins the Chrome OS team
CloudReady OS exists in three versions: the “Home” edition is free, does not integrate with the Google administration console, and lacks technical support; the “Education” subscription costs $ 20 per year per device; while the “Enterprise” option costs $ 49 per year per device. Paid options include one year of technical support.
Neverware and CloudReady join Google and the Chrome OS team, Neverware says. The startup was founded in 2011, before launching CloudReady in 2015. Google invested in a Series B cycle in 2017. The company says it has 1.37 million installs.
“As CloudReady becomes an official Chrome OS offering, we can expect update mechanisms to conform to official Chrome OS releases,” Neverware notes. The move to CloudReady has two special features. After installation, there is no going back to Windows, so users have to back up their files. Also, after the transition, accessing a local drive becomes difficult as this variant of Chrome OS relies almost entirely on Google Drive for storage.