Google updated the ChromeOS Developer channel with the first version of the browser OS that comes with an activated version of the Aura window manager.
The look and feel of ChromeOS distances itself from the browser and is now much closer to a traditional, window-based operating system. Google also supplies 50 wallpapers with ChromeOS Dev 19.0.1084.17.
Other changes include file support for TAR, GZ and BZIP2, a media recovery tool, as well as an updated scratchpad app. The update is only supported by the Chromebooks Samsung Series 5 and Acer AC700, while Google's own Cr-48 will not get this particular version. Google noted that it simply skipped the Cr-48 with version 19, but will provide ChromeOS 20 for the device again. However, it is unclear whether the Cr-48 will actually get the Aura window manager.
Google is offering Aura as a hardware-accelerated UI for Chrome/ChromeOS that is designed to provide much richer graphics and animations than Chrome does today. The idea is to offer a competitive product next to entry-level Windows 8 systems and help a second generation of Chromebooks to be more successful than the initial product range. Rumor has it that fewer than 5,000 Chromebooks were sold last year.