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11 Oct 11 Google Chrome Remote Desktop app goes beta

Watch out, Internet Explorer. Google Chrome has finally added a business-first feature that will help it seriously challenge your dominance in enterprise settings. Chrome Remote Desktop (formerly referred to as  Chromoting) has finally launched in the Chrome Web Store.

Like other remote desktop solutions, the Chrome app lets you set up one machine as a host and then connect from a second machine. The app utilizes XMPP and SSL to provide secure, zero-config connections in much the same way apps like TeamViewer and Mikogo do. You just need the person who is hosting the session to tell you the access code displayed on their screen in order to connect. Punch it in on your system, and you’re connected a few seconds later.

So why is Chrome Remote Desktop a big deal? For starters, there’s a darn good chance it’s going to be totally free. Other apps can cost thousands of dollars to roll out across a corporate network, so this could be a huge cost saving move that’s relatively easy to implement.

It’s also got the potential to prevent administrative headaches. If your machines are already running the latest version of Google Chrome, all that’s required is a simple in-browser app install –and since it’s not a standard desktop program, Chrome Remote Desktop also doesn’t carry the risk of playing havoc with your other essential apps. If Chrome didn’t cause any problems, neither will the Remote Desktop app.

At some point, Google will no doubt tie Chrome Remote Desktop to the Apps admin panel. That’ll make it an even more attractive remote access option for businesses who run Google Apps, and especially to those who have rolled out Chromebooks. But with Microsoft busily pushing Office 365, Windows Intune, and the much-improved Internet Explorer 9, Google’s not going to get a free pass from the gang in Redmond.

More at the Chrome Web Store, via Google OS

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