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Just like the Chrome browser, it has long been Google’s goal for Chrome OS to have a Stable, Beta and Dev channel for feature iteration. In a move that signifies a closer move to a Chrome OS release, there now is a Stable Channel. You can find this on the latest builds of Chromium OS by going to the about section under the wrench.
Commercial Chrome OS devices will be shipped in the Stable Channel, which is the consumer-friendly version just like in the browser. This provides evidence that we may see some sort of major announcement about Chrome OS during Google’s I/O developer conference being held May 10-11.
The screenshot above was taken from a build of Chromium OS that was run in a VM from Hexxeh where Stable was the default option. This was an addition that is documented on the Chromium site. As of right now, the Cr-48 does not have a Stable Channel available, which is confirmed by looking at the automated tool that lists every build of Chrome and the version. But judging by this, we can very much expect to see one very soon.
During last December’s Chrome event, VP Sundar Pichai announced that Acer and Samsung would be the first hardware partners to launch Chrome OS devices by mid-2011. It would seem that I/O would be a great launch platform, or at the least a time when we get an update from Google about the progress of Chrome OS.