The team behind the Chromium platform, which is the foundation of Google Chrome and Chrome OS, has published a few pictures exploring a number of user interface concepts in an exercise they call, form factors exploration which turned out to be a tablet PC fest.
The Apple iPad design team better take heed from Glen Murphy, who is none other than one of the designers working on Google Chrome OS. Although the designs are subject to change, they do cast an interesting light on the work flow behind Chromium projects.
Amongst the various ideas explored at Zooming UI for multiple tabs - they do not say whether it will be a pinch-and-zoom solution, side tabs for navigating (we'd like to see that in ALL browsers and spreadsheet apps altogether) as well as starting "multiple browsers on screen using a launcher".
Chromium OS also looks at other more traditional formats, like Netbook, Laptops, Desktops and up to 60-inch displays - but still no mobile phones/smartphones for now - which shows that Google's ambitions will extend to the lounge where it might be a competitor to Windows Media Centre.
The various Tablet PC designs created do bear some resemblance with Apple's iPad with the same rounded corners (both for the screen and the chassis), big bezels and, surprise, surprise, a 4:3 screen format.
The Chromium team says that Chrome OS will need to have a screen between 5-inch and 10-inch for users to have an optimised user experience.
Chrome OS could merge with Android as early as the end of next year we posit, maybe even earlier. The iPad runs on a fork of the iPhone OS and there's no reason why Google could launch a single, integrated, fused OS. No need to maintain two platforms, better compatibility, more clarity and better usage of resources.