Google, it seems, is working on a new operating system (OS). The project’s current name is Fuchsia, and it is currently just another piece of potential software in the massive pile of software code. (See more) But what this software is designed for is currently a mystery.

Google makes the world’s most popular smartphone operating system, called Android. It also has an OS for computers called the Chrome OS as well as a software called Android Wear for wearable devices, such as smartwatches, apart from Android TV, CarPlay and OnHub. But the answer to unlocking this mystery could actually be hidden in these three operating systems—they are basically built on the open-source operating system called Linux. Fuchsia, on the other hand, is not.

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Fuchsia opts for a different kernel to create a lightweight OS. It is believed that Google is using Magenta, a “medium-sized microkernel" that itself is based on a project called LittleKernel. The idea is to build a leaner and equally capable OS compared to the current ones. Magenta is designed for scale, and can work on a variety of devices such as smartphones and PCs.

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The question is could this be a software for the Internet of Things (IoT) ecosystem? Google currently has the Android-based IoT platform called Brillo. Or is Google looking to unify Android, Chrome and others into a single operating system? One of the reasons why Google is shifting from Linux could be the fact that Magenta will also offer better security features, something that they have struggled with, particularly on Android, over the past few years.

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At present, based on the little proof there is of Fuschia’s existence, it is difficult to say what Google plans to do ultimately with this software code. Software companies often publicly test new pieces of software to get help from more and more developers to spot and iron out issues and improve the performance. However, these pieces of software are also often ditched and not heard of again. No one can say right now whether Fuchsia will meet a similar fate, but it would not be surprising if it does. Google tends to work on a large number of open-source projects at any given point of time, across different stages of development, and many do fade away.

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