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Chrome OS Flex Exits Early Access, Offering Upgrades for More PCs and Macs

A laptop running Chrome OS

After just a few months of Early Access, the Chrome OS Flex software is graduating to Google’s “stable” release channel. It’s now certified for over 400 devices, and businesses hit by ransomware can now join a “rapid release program” to install Chrome OS flex on affected machines without losing access to Windows apps.

The Chrome OS Flex installer launched in February of 2022 to immediate fanfare. It turns old PCs and Macs into Chromebooks, increasing their lifespan and usability. Not only does this reduce waste, but it ensures that people, businesses, and schools can enjoy a fast and reliable computer without buying something new.

Additionally, Google claims that Chrome OS Flex can reduce an old PC or Mac’s power consumption by up to 19%. That’s great for users who want to extend their old laptop’s battery life, but as Google notes, Chrome OS Flex could also reduce the carbon footprint of large businesses with thousands of computers.

“When a ransomware attack shut down operations, Nordic Choice Hotels chose ChromeOS Flex to quickly replace the OS on compromised devices and get them back online. ChromeOS Flex enabled Nordic Choice Hotels to turn a disaster into an upgrade. With a one-page guide and a USB, employees across 200 Nordic Choice hotels in Scandinavia were able to convert 2,000 computers in under 48 hours, protecting their business from a costly shutdown.”

And businesses may see the biggest benefit from Chrome OS Flex. The software’s easy to deploy with a USB stick, but more importantly, it’s an amazing tool for fighting ransomware attacks. Google Enterprise partner Cameyo offers a “rapid release program” to help install Chrome OS Flex on thousands of machines within a matter of days, and its software allows Chrome OS to run Windows apps.

You can install Chrome OS Flex for free with nothing more than a USB drive. The software is certified for over 400 devices, though it should technically work on uncertified PCs and Macs that meet the minimum hardware requirements. I suggest installing Chrome OS Flex on an old laptop that’s collecting dust, especially if you have a kid who could use a computer for school or Minecraft..

The 6 Best Chromebooks of 2022

Best Overall
Acer Chromebook Spin 713
Best Mid-Range
Lenovo Chromebook Flex 5
Best Display
Samsung Galaxy Chromebook 2
Acer Chromebook 314
Best Budget
Best for Performance
Google Pixelbook Go
Best Tablet
enovo Chromebook Duet
Andrew Heinzman Andrew Heinzman
Andrew is the News Editor for Review Geek, where he covers breaking stories and manages the news team. He joined Life Savvy Media as a freelance writer in 2018 and has experience in a number of topics, including mobile hardware, audio, and IoT. Read Full Bio »