It’s not only a matter of which came first: Google’s Chrome Apps experience or Comodo’s Virtual Kiosk; it’s also a matter of which virtual platform is superior.
Google recently unveiled its Chrome Apps initiative, allowing users to launch apps that exist outside of the browser. Over the past few weeks, Google has been updating its developer version of the Chrome browser to run what’s essentially Chrome OS within Windows 8’s “Metro” mode. Google’s long term plan likely entails shifting users away from any particular desktop platform (Windows, Mac OS X, or Linux) and onto Google Chrome as a platform.
Hmm, I wonder if Google took a hint from us while designing their new strategy…?
Nearly a year ago, in December of 2012, Comodo developed our Virtual Kiosk technology in order to provide users with a free, fully isolated browsing environment with enhanced security. In addition to enhanced security, the Virtual Kiosk also seamlessly integrated with Google’s Chrome Application ecosystem. Once open, the Kiosk welcomes the user with an elegant, touch friendly shell complete with preinstalled apps likes Gmail, Google Play, and the most important of all – Angry Birds.
Searching for and installing additional apps is a piece of cake. You simply open the App Market (shown below) and choose your new apps from Google’s Chrome Web Store and you’re done. Your new apps will instantly appear on your Desktop!
Unlike the Chrome Apps initiative, the Virtual Kiosk can also run legacy Windows applications such as Microsoft Word or Internet Explorer, providing an even superior user experience. That’s right; you can have your cake and eat it too.
When you install COMODO Internet Security 2013, you not only get a virtual computer inside a computer, but you also get a top-of-the-line Internet Security suite. The Virtual Kiosk is a sandboxed operating environment inside of which you can run programs and browse the Internet without the fear of those activities damaging your real computer. Additionally, when you run programs in the sandbox you leave no cookies or browsing history behind on your real system. This makes the Virtual Kiosk ideal for performing actions that require the highest security protocols such as online banking and shopping, visiting risky websites, clicking unknown links, and testing Beta software.
What Makes Virtual Kiosk Different (A.K.A. Better) Than Desktop Chrome Apps Experience?
Besides the obvious differences like the name of the product and release date, below are the not so obvious, yet very important, differences between Virtual Kiosk and the Desktop Chrome Apps experience:
- Virtual Kiosk provides a fully isolated environment whereas the Desktop Chrome Apps experience does not.
- Some users believe it is possible for apps to break out of the Desktop Chrome Apps environment while Virtual Kiosk has the capability to securely trap apps inside the isolated environment.
- Virtual Kiosk provides an iOS like user experience, different from the Desktop Chrome Apps experience.
- Google’s Desktop Chrome Apps experience can only operate Chrome’s Web Apps, whereas Virtual Kiosk provides seamless integration with both the Google Chrome Application ecosystem and legacy Windows applications. Furthermore, all of the apps are accessible from the Virtual Kiosk desktop.
As you can see, there are clear differences in the capabilities and security levels between these two virtual experiences. It’s okay, Google. Everyone knows imitation is the highest form of flattery.