7 Comments

Summary:

Amid many other third-party options, Google is planning an app that remotely controls your computer from an iOS device. Will you use it or is this another chance to spurn Google from your iPad or iPhone?

iPad LogMeIn Ignition controlling MacBook

You’ll eventually be able to control a remote computer from your iOS device with a new app from the unlikeliest of sources: Google. The company is working on what it calls a “Chromoting” tool for iOS; the term being a sort of portmanteau of the terms “Chrome” and “remoting”. An Android version is expected first but the software for iOS should soon follow.

LogMeIn Ignition

Mention of the iOS client, along with the general status of the project is available in the Chromium issues tracker and was spotted by 9to5 Mac on Thursday. Here’s a snippet of the status, explaining that the client software needs a little more visual polish:

“As noted, the iOS version is very unpolished at this stage. The toolbar icons are all placeholder, and the background color behind the host screen needs to be changed from blue to black. The upper toolbar for iOS (containing just the back button, so it can barely be called a toolbar), is revealed by tapping on the compass in the lower toolbar. Our plan is to consolidate the upper and lower toolbars into one toolbar that will likely be located in the upper section of the screen.”

News of an Android version was first discovered last July but this is the first mention I’ve seen of an iOS edition. Assuming the two clients will have the same functions, here’s a high level summary of how the software will work:

  • Authenticate using a Google account on the phone
  • Query and display the host list from the Chromoting directory server
  • Connect to and communicate with the host service over XMPP/ICE
  • Establish peer-to-peer channels for communicating with the host service

Google already offers this functionality on the desktop with a Remote Desktop Client extension in the Chrome Web Store. And of course, there are plenty of third-party remote desktop clients for iOS available.

So I wonder if a sizable percentage of iOS device owners will actually even use Google’s Chromoting tool. It’s likely that the software will require Chrome to be installed on your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch to begin with — Google is building many features into the Chrome framework, turning it into a strategic platform — and I suspect far more people use Safari over Chrome on iOS anyway.

  1. Robert Varipapa Friday, January 17, 2014

    Aren’t there already dozens of Apps that do this presently? iTeleport and Screens are my current favorites.

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  2. Been using Remoter VNC…

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  3. Been using TeamViewer and LogMeIn for a while now.

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  4. isn’t this be a reference to Chromoting app that has popped in Android source code ?

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  5. Great … now google can search my desktop too to build it’s borg like database of me … what’s next department of pre-crime? No thank you google …

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  6. Roger merrill Friday, January 17, 2014

    When can we get the glasse?

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  7. Look out, everyone! Do NOT use Google’s products if you want any chance of preserving your privacy–or avoiding being exploited by or used by advertisers galore!

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