After months of rumors and commits in Chrome OS development, it was made official at Google I/O yesterday: Chrome OS will soon natively support Linux apps. It is a significant step forward for the platform and should bring improved tools to developers on the platform.
During the keynote, where this was almost mentioned as an after thought, Android Studio was highlighted as being one of the apps that will work once this feature rolls out to everyone.
It will also mean that if there is a Linux app that you like, you will be able to run it on your Chromebook. Despite Chrome OS being based on Linux, to this point you were not able to run Linux apps so this is a big step forward.
The question of course is when will the arrive in the Stable Channel. Right now, it only works on the Pixelbook in the Dev Channel. That is currently based on Chrome 68 and that is expect to arrive on or around July 31st of this year. So at best, we are still a little over two months away and that assumes that the feature doesn’t get pushed back. That isn’t likely, but it could happen.
Either way, it is a great advancement for the platform and one that will bring a range of tools and apps to Chromebooks that were simply off limits before now.