ChromeOS on Android not likely as Google says it was 'just a tech demo'

Google Chrome logo on a phone screen
(Image credit: Jay Bonggolto / Android Central)

What you need to know

  • Following an interview with Google's Dave Burke, it seems that a previous demonstration of ChromeOS on Android was nothing more than a demo.
  • It appears as though the company was interested in seeing if the capability for Android to run ChromeOS through its AVF could work — and it can.
  • A previous demo was reportedly shown to corporate partners in private using a Pixel 8's display output capabilities.

Google is dashing any hope of ChromeOS arriving on Android as an interview with a notable member suggests it was just a test.

According to Mishaal Rahman (Android Authority), an interview with Google's Dave Burke, vice president of engineering for Android detailed what's happening with ChromeOS and Android. Burke said that the company's "tech demo" of the Ferrochrome project was aimed to see its virtualization technology in action.

Burke added that the software could only get off the ground thanks to the AVF (android virtualization framework) introduced in Android 13. This framework delivered a safe environment for "highly" sensitive code.

What Google was playtesting was the secure computing side of Android. As Burke stated, most of it is reportedly done through TrustZone, which isn't "as safe as virtual machines." While TrustZone typically works off ARM CPUs, the virtual machines are a "cleaner, safer way to run compartmentalized secure code."

The tech demo was done through Android 15, a software that Google has updated with a new AVF to run its graphical operating systems through a virtual machine. This capability comes with GPU acceleration, as well. However, the test was just a proof of concept to see if such capabilities could exist.

Google's Sameer Samat chimed in, stating that things often "start like this" at the company. Unfortunately, it seems anyone's hopes of ChromeOS on Android are squandered as Google has no plans of continuing — at least, for now.

Windows 11 Vs Chrome Os

(Image credit: Andrew Myrick / Android Central)

It was previously rumored that Google was in the process of creating its own Samsung DeX-like computing environment through ChromeOS. During a private event, users saw a Pixel 8 running the Chromium OS variant known as "Ferrochrome." The demo showcased the latest Pixel flagship utilizing its display output functionality through the OS.

There wasn't much else shown during the event aside from the device's (and the software's) capability to run the computing software.

Nickolas Diaz
News Writer

Nickolas is always excited about tech and getting his hands on it. Writing for him can vary from delivering the latest tech story to scribbling in his journal. When Nickolas isn't hitting a story, he's often grinding away at a game or chilling with a book in his hand.

    Not surprised. They never had a clear vision. It started as Chrome as the "Desktop" and that was it. Then it turned into lightweight Linux like system. Then added some Android support and never did anything with it.

    I was waiting for them to abandon "plans" for it. Google Graveyard, you have a patient on hospice headed your way.