Google waves goodbye to Linux for new IoT OS Fuchsia - coming soon to Raspberry Pi

Google is building a new operating system and kernel to run low-power and fully-featured devices for the internet.
Written by Liam Tung, Contributing Writer

One of the Google developers working on Fuchsia confirmed it will be ready for Raspberry Pi 3 "soon".

Image: Raspberry Pi

Google has started building a new open-source operating system that doesn't rely on the Linux kernel.

While Android and Chrome OS have Linux at their heart, Google's new OS, dubbed Fuchsia, opts for a different kernel to create a lightweight but capable OS, suitable for running all Internet of Things devices, from embedded systems to higher-powered phones and PCs.

Instead of the Linux kernel, Google's new OS uses Magenta, which itself is based on LittleKernel, a rival to commercial OSes for embedded systems such as FreeRTOS and ThreadX.

According to Android Police, Magenta can target smartphones and PCs thanks to user-mode support and a capability-based security model not unlike Android 6.0's permissions framework.

Google is also using its own Dart as the main programming language, Flutter for the user interface, and Escher for rendering, which may suggest Google wants the OS to support its Material Design user interface.

The OS has support for 32-bit and 64-bit ARM CPUs, as well as 64-bit PCs. Travis Geiselbrecht, one of the Google developers working on Fuchsia, also confirmed Fuchsia will be ready for Raspberry Pi 3 "soon".

It's not clear yet how Google plans to position Fuchsia with respect to Android and Chrome OS. It could, as Android Police speculates, replace both. So far, Google's only description of it is: "Pink + Purple == Fuchsia (a new Operating System)".

Alternatively, it could be used to power one of Google's embedded system products, such as the OnHub route or Google Home.

Fuchsia also arrives in the early phases of Google's other OS for IoT devices, Brillo, and its Weave networking protocol, which has gained some support from brands such as Asus.

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