Enterprises most likely to heed Chromebooks are those that have or are embracing Google Gmail instead of the long-time enterprise standard, Microsoft Outlook. "A move to corporate Gmail remains pretty much a prerequisite to the adoption of Chromebooks," writes Gownder. "Once Gmail is in place, Chromebooks can promote collaborative work styles. One CIO reported that workers at his company started to use Google Drive and other collaboration tools organically and automatically' after the adoption of Gmail. Chromebooks reinforce the value of these tools and represent the next logical step in empowering collaboration."
Gownder's assessment raises a number of questions. Can Chromebook users ever be anything except a very limited niche? If there's a mix of Windows laptops, iOS tablets, and Google Chromebooks, how does the enterprise maintain and protect data consistently in three disparate environments?
John Cox covers wireless networking and mobile computing for Network World. Twitter: http://twitter.com/johnwcoxnww. Email: mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org. Read more about anti-malware in Network World's Anti-malware section.