Parallels Desktop is now available for Chromebook Enterprise, allowing business customers to run Windows apps directly on Chrome OS for the first time.
“Chrome OS is increasingly being chosen by modern enterprises, either for remote work, hybrid, or in the office,” Google vice president of Chrome OS John Solomon said in a prepared statement. “We are thrilled to partner with Parallels to bring legacy and full-featured Windows applications support, through Parallels Desktop for Chromebook Enterprise, to help businesses easily transition to cloud-first devices and workflows.”
Parallels Desktop for Chromebook Enterprise lets businesses enable a new feature in Chrome OS that will download a Windows 10 virtual machine (VM) image, install it on users’ Chromebooks, and make available any Windows applications those users need. Which apps are installed can be controlled by the business using the Google Admin console, and licensing is handled on the backend as well, so users can just get to work.
What’s missing in this first generation release are some of the niceties we see today in more established versions of Parallels Desktop, such as Coherence mode on Mac, which lets users run Windows apps side-by-side next to macOS apps. But Parallels tells me that that feature is on the roadmap and will be available soon.
But even in 1.0 form, Parallels Desktop for Chromebook Enterprise supports a lot of useful functionality, including cross-platform capabilities like a shared clipboard, user profile, and custom folders. The product also supports dynamic screen resolution so that you can drag the app window to resize it and automatically scale the contained Windows environment to match. Parallels Desktop for Chromebook Enterprise can also be run full-screen, of course.
Parallels Desktop for Chromebook Enterprise is available now and costs $69.99 per user per year. A full-featured one-month trial with five user licenses is available for businesses that wish to give it a try.
Oh, and what about individuals?
In this initial release, Parallels Desktop is only available for businesses, but Parallels tells me that the product will be made available for individuals who have compatible Chromebook hardware in the future. Parallels Desktop requires an Intel Core i5 or i7 processor, 16 GB of RAM, and 128 GB of internal SSD storage.
I have access to the product and hope to be able to evaluate it personally soon.