With the recent demise of official support for Microsoft's Windows XP, Google is looking to attract business users of the 12-year-old OS with a handful of promotions for enterprises considering the switch to Chromebooks.

Organizations buying through Chromebooks for Business will get $100 off each managed device they purchase. And if Windows desktop app support is needed, Google is offering $200 off Chromebooks for Business with VMWare's DaaS virtualization suite, and 25% off Citrix XenApp Platinum Edition — both of which are designed to ease the transition from Windows to Chrome OS.

Between Google's efforts to steal away Windows users and Microsoft's campaign to push folks onto Windows 8 (or at least Windows 7), it's clear both companies see XP's end-of-life as an important juncture, particularly in the enterprise space where the ageing OS is so well-entrenched.

Source: Google Enterprise Blog


Reader comments

Google offers incentives to bring XP business users to Chromebooks


Chromebook is a joke! It cant even compete with the features of Windows XP. If I will choose between Chromebook and Windows XP, I will still choose Windows XP.

It's not a "joke", though it may not be suitable for your use case. But for plenty of people who spend all of their time within a browser and within the Google ecosystem, it's a perfectly usable device.

I wouldn't say its a joke. I know plenty of people that buy macbook pros just to fuck around on facebook and youtube. chromebooks are perfect for those kind of people.

If my company did not intentionally use the non standard Internet Explorer features, I could use Chromebooks for 100% of what we do and cut my office IT cost almost in half (small office - 5 people and I do my own IT).

Chromebooks are definitely not a joke. As several people have said, they are definitely not suitable for every use case, my Nexus 10 for instance is what I use for casual web browsing rather than a Chromebook. I can also see how they would be very limiting for a business that doesn't want to be 100% reliant on the web (People will always need an Office suite, and not everyone is prepared to use Google's offering). Given a choice between a Chromebook and XP? Chromebook. Given a choice between Win 7 and a Chromebook, probably Win 7 but it would depend what I am wanting to do with it. OS X and Windows? OS X but thats because I am a developer who uses Unix tools and have a need for Photoshop more than any particular love for Mac.

Office 365 can also be used through Chrome/Chrome OS, so you are not limited to Google Docs. Chrome OS has supported local storage for a while, so that is not an issue. Also, most SOHO (Small Office Home Office) marketed routers include a USB port that supports shared storage.

Platform support for software is always an issue. Despite the fact that they use similar hardware, it is still hard to get better graphic design and video software for a PC vs Mac. My company uses Internet Explorer extensions all the time, making our 100% web based software platform dependent on Windows.

The biggest issue with Chrome OS is the reliability and speed of your internet service - No service means that nothing gets done. However, if you have a service the is good enough for most VOIP phone systems, then you can do well with Chrome OS.

Thank you for that well thought, informative, and succinct response. Tell us, what terribly advanced and resource intensive work do you do that can't be handled by a Chromebook? Even better, why don't you tell us about your experience with ChromeOS that led to this enlightened opinion?

I love my Chromebook, but I hate not being able to sync/stream media between my CB and a Windows PC and Android device without using the 'cloud'.

It doesn't seem right that you can't at least do this between Android and Chrome OS devices.

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Ok, pull the android repo and build a rom on windows xp....oh wait.

Also, these are absolutely filthy cheap if you're good enough with computers to get linux on a chromebook!! Try finding another hardware solution that can run ubuntu at this price. You can't.

I run Ubuntu on lots of old machines.
But for super old ones you may have to go back a version or two.
and 15 years is pretty much the limit for old computers. They simply don't have enough hard drive space or ram to run anything (except 15 year old apps... did you keep copies ? Do floppy disks last 15 year ? Not usually How about CD's ..oops ...15 years predates CD technology ...)

Ummm computer CD-R/W was introduced in 1990 (computer CD-ROM in the mid 80s), and was common just a few years later.

The first consumer music CDs were available in the early 80s (the technology was developed in the 70s).

Thanks. I setup my first CD-ROM in a PC in 1990, 24 years ago, and they had been out for a few years before that.

The real explosion of CD-ROM use was with the release of Windows 95 and its AutoPlay functionality. The company I worked for released the first AutoPlay-enabled commercial software in history in 1995, almost 20 years ago.

By the guy's picture, he should know better. Unless he dies his hair and beard white on purpose.

A lot of people (at least in my field) do their work remotely. You can remote into another PC from a Chromebook and end up with basically the same experience. Factor in the vastly reduced cost of the devices themselves, and it's easy to see how businesses could benefit from Chromebooks.

Remote controlling a customers computer from a Google Device (chrome book) when Google is in the news lately for cooperation with NSA.

How many of your customers will freak on you for that ? Or do you just not tell them ?

Or run a Windows PC that that has an open back door, for the NSA, built in to the operating system? Did you somehow miss that news? Did Microsoft not tell you?

Exactly. In fact, Google has been in the news lately because they've taken steps to prevent the NSA from snooping on their customers. Meanwhile, Microsoft has been in bed with the government for awhile.

You obviously didn't read the article. This is not to make a choice between the Chrome book and WinXP, it's to make a choice between the Chrome book and Win8.

It's actually a great idea with the amount of push-back that MS has received with converting users to the Win8 (metro) desktop.

Look at the comments on wpcentral, scorched earth or what! People just can't play nice.

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I updated my XP laptop to Linux yesterday. Couldn't be happier with my decision. There is a learning curve but I wasn't dropping $100 on Windows 7 or 8 on a 5 year old laptop. I will likely switch to a Chromebook when the time comes to upgrade my laptop. Most people do not need a full fledged laptop for everyday use. The most demanding thing most people do is browse the internet or create a word/excel document.

Linux novice here, but don't worry too much about getting super-advanced with it. Grab a well-reviewed Ubuntu for Beginners-style book off Amazon (if Ubuntu's what you use, anyways) and you'll get the hang of it in no time. My dad's WinXP machine's been down for over two years now, and while he obviously doesn't use it a ton, I'd like to set him up with a basic Linux setup that I could administer for him remotely so he doesn't have to worry about it crashing/getting infected like his original machine did.

The inability to reinstall is the true evil of discontinued support. Old computers really shouldn't be running anything except the OS they came with. Too often you upgrade the OS and the old computer just can't take the extra load.
October , 2001 , that's 13 years ago. You got a good run out of that equipment.

I agree it's Ubuntu time (Ubuntu is a version of Linux) for the old clunkers .

I used to have a string of three computers, two cast off's on Ubuntu and one on windows. Until my girlfriend decided she needs a machine.

XP came out in 2001. That doesn't mean his laptop dates from that year. There was even a period after Windows 7 came out that OEMs were giving some consumers a choice to go with Windows XP or the new Windows 7.

Many of the companies haven't upgraded from XP due to proprietary software. I've developed database software for a couple of companies, and they have found that upgrading to W7/W8 means having to purchase new licenses to go with those upgrades. So, the reason they stick with XP is not just the cost of new computers, but other cost factors. One company was looking to upgrade to W7 and found that upgrading their reporting system would not only break XP access, it would cost $300k for the new licenses. Not to mention paying for either a new database platform, or for developers (like me) to do a complete rewrite (or both).

They've been putting off upgrading to save money, but it is coming down to the time when they will have to switch. The only way that Chromebooks would be an answer for them is if they made their secure database system web accessible (currently only VPN accessible), which has been something they don't want to do.

A lot of these companies will still use XP for things that aren't connected to the web. I remember running into a computer operating on Windows ME a year or so ago.

We call that the microsoft trap. Or the microsoft treadmill.
Oh , Win 7 (I'm running it now) does have "compatibility mode" that goes all the way back to win 95 , but it's flakey and doesn't work on everything. Tell your client to get one win 7 or Win 8 machine and try out the compatibility mode first before they jump.

I worked on a Windows OS refresh project changing over from XP - 7 and the company had so many legacy apps that it was a difficult, costly, and slow transition. They ended up having to virtualize their legacy apps because either the original producer of the software went out of business or it was seemingly impossible to fix it to work on Windows 7.

I was actually considering a doing a Chromebook trial in a thin-client style configuration to possibly replace XP machines for some of our users, but the inability to remote into Chromebook desktop (like using VNC) is a show stopper. I need to have the ability to see a user's screen and control the mouse/keyboard in the event that they need assistance. I've read similar functionality exists through Google Hangouts, but that would not be an acceptable solution for our company - we need something that does not go outside of our networks.

If you're looking for something that doesn't leave your network , you really shouldn't be using a chrome book at all , since it constantly phones home back to google.
And if you're super strict about not a single byte must go out , I advise installing ghost on one machine. To monitor tracking cookies. It's an eye openning experience to see just how many corperations are following your every move. Ghost reports no less than 14 corperations tracking me on this page alone.

I am aware that Chromebooks try to make connections to Google services, but they can be blocked through firewall exceptions. (We actually only allow specific traffic to pass through our firewalls.) They do work without those Google connections, however; and would be a cost-effective solution for connecting to in-house web applications as well as function as a thin-client to internal terminal services.

It will be interesting to see how many people switch to a web reliant device in the age of Snowden / NSA. The numbers should be some indication of what lies ahead when older computers start to die and need replacing. How serious are the IT and management people about their companies privacy ? There are news reports and polls ... but we could use real numbers.

(edit) forgot . Bandwidth usage , especially for cloud apps . Not going to be an ideal situation for anyone with bandwidth caps.

when google's office (doc) can be offline app, I think Chrome would be more business friendly.
It's just sucks to have documents lagging when you are trying to work.

Trying to edit a large document with tables and images is a nightmare in google doc. Yes it's gotten much better, but still really bad when the file is bigger than the cloud/browser/memory can handle