Turn Mac or Windows computers into Chromebooks.

Neverware Releases CloudReady for Microsoft Office 365. (Turn Your Old Computer into a New Chromebook.)

A software company well-known in the Google world…ditches Google. Kinda.

Do you have a computer or laptop that’s just lying around because you’ve upgraded? Turn it into a CloudReady computer.

Turn it into a Chromebook.

You may have heard of a little company called Neverware.

Specifically, that’s Neverware for Chromebooks.

It’s a software company that’s built up a nice reputation for making applications that basically transforms any dated laptop or desktop into a Chromebook. This software works for both Windows and Mac and has been used by many businesses and consumers alike.

It’s called CloudReady software. And it’s the go-to software for turning your Windows or Mac computer into a Chromebook.

Last updated: 5/9/17.

Turn your Window or Mac computer into a Chromebook with Neverware

Chrome OS on Windows or Mac computers.
CloudReady by Neverware turns any Mac or Windows computer into a Chromebook by running Chrome OS.

This software works by installing a copy of Chrome OS and transforms the device into a Chromebook. It’s not a complete Chromebook though, but it’s close enough. They claim that their software to be “built for security, manageability, and performance.” They’ve been featured on many different news outlets, such as WSJ, Engadget, The Verge, and The Boston Globe.

Rather than doing the opposite and putting Windows on Chrome OS, like CrossOver and Exagear, this software does the opposite. I don’t know why you’d want to get Windows on your Chromebook, but going the other way around makes sense.

It allows you to connect to the Internet and use web-based apps without any hardware limitations. It doesn’t matter if your computer is weak, slow, or outdated. CloudReady does all the processing for you on their servers and serves it to your computer, or at least that’s how I assume it works. It works on 200 of the most common PC and Mac models, and it can even dual-boot with Windows 7 and up.

From their site, they clearly and boldly state:

“CloudReady is based on Google’s Chromium OS, the same open-source architecture as Chrome OS. Whether your computers are brand new or a decade old, installing CloudReady provides unparalleled speed, simplicity, and security without hardware limitations.”

It’s completely free to use for individuals, and they offer a free trial for organizations such as businesses and schools.

So, this software has always used the Google Drive service and was the only option for a while.(Yes, it’s a cloud-based software.)

Now, Neverware has created a new version of its CloudReady software that works with Microsoft’s Online 365 Suite instead. It’s built for integration with Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and more. You can imagine why. Not everyone uses Google services. And others don’t want to integrate with it when they’ve built up an infrastructure around Microsoft and their products.

 

Why work with Microsoft? Market demand.

Install Chrome OS on a Windows or Mac computer with Neverware.
Students, teachers, and professionals can all take advantage of Neverware to get their computers loaded with Chrome OS.

Although the Google version of CloudReady works well with Google’s stuff, Neverware believes that making another version of its software would capture another market- a market that’s deeply integrated with Microsoft’s software and doesn’t want to switch over to Google. I mean, that’s just an opinion, but it makes sense, right?

The Microsoft version of CloudReady will still be Chrome OS, but it’ll integrate with OneDrive rather than Google Drive. When you use it, it’ll connect to your Microsoft’s online Office Suite. You can already use the Office 365 apps with the Google Drive version of CloudReady, but this newer version has a deeper integration and simply just flows better.

Think of all the applications of it.

It could help teachers, students, administrators, businesses, corporate offices, and many other industries that are already tied up with Microsoft Office 365. This makes education possible for more students and relieves software limitations. This is the kind of thing that we need and actually benefits society.

But…I haven’t told you the best part about their whole system yet.

Are you ready?

The best part?

 

The price.

Yup, that’s right. Who’d ever think the price of software is a good thing?

It’s offered at just $1 per student on an annual basis or $15 per year on a device basis. This is very, very affordable for any school district or startup business trying to get into gear. Many schools don’t have the budget for expensive licenses for enterprise editions of Microsoft’s Word, Excel, or PowerPoint software, so this will make it much more affordable for them.

Students and teachers can now have access to the programs they’re familiar with. Even though a lot of schools have made the switch to Google’s laptops, many still stick with Microsoft’s versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and more. This should make it easier for them as their app is extremely affordable for enterprise solutions.

They didn’t just make this software alone, and they aren’t selling or distributing it illegally for a price Microsoft wouldn’t approve of. They actually collaborated with Microsoft to develop the newer version of CloudReady, so this should be in their favor to get their product around (and make money from it).

 

Neverware and the Google Chromebook – is it a game changer?

All in all, does this really affect Google? Probably not. Whatever entity is currently using the Google version of CloudReady is probably going to stick with it since they’re happy with it (most likely), and any other entity that wants install it CloudReady in their computers with Microsoft’s version will probably not switch to Google in the first place.

The only clear winner seems to be Never Are since they’re now capturing a whole additional market. But then again, there will be a whole bunch of benefits as well, such as giving schools tied up with Microsoft some affordable software. This is the type of forward-thinking that we need.

Want to try it out? You can grab it for yourself (absolutely free if you’re an individual) at Neverware’s site. You can turn any computer into a fast, simple, secure, and easy to use laptop with their app. I suggest you try it out and see for yourself. If you have an old laptop lying around, go ahead and install it. You’ll get some use out of it and it doesn’t cost you anything.

It’s a win-win.

About Andy Z.

Andy is a casual-hardcore Chrome OS fan and contributes to the site regularly. He likes computers, tech, sports cars, videogames, and of course, Chromebooks. Thinker. Introvert. Geek. You can find him on Twitter (@platytech), or send him an email (platy@platypusplatypus.com).

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