Google is fairly adept at working on mysterious operating systems without a clear public-end implementation or even a production future. For the longest time, confusion and rumours persisted on Google’s Fuchsia OS, which was known as Magenta back in the day. Now, it seems that Google has a new, mysterious operating system in the making, and it is rather curiously called ‘Pigweed’. The presence of the OS has only been barely spotted, without dropping any clear hint on what it might be for. Spotted as a trademark filing with the United States Patent and Trademark Organisation (USPTO), the trademark filing does suggest that Google does envision a use case for Pigweed at some point, or at least thinks so for now.
Not a lot is known about Google’s Pigweed, at least for now. Even its staid biological meaning does not quite lend any reference to ongoing technology projects known to us – after all, what could a nutritious, edible plant mean as an operating system? As we’ve often known, however, the naming of an OS may not entirely be linked to its purpose, and this defeats the purpose of looking into clues within its one-word name.
Interestingly, 9to5Google suggests that Google has twice made references to Pigweed – once within the code repository of Fuchsia OS, and the second time in the Monorail issue tracker that is used by Google’s Chrome engine and some other platforms. Neither of this really give us clues as to what Pigweed’s purpose is, save the single line description in the trademark filing that says it is a “computer operating software”. In today’s world, that can literally mean an OS for absolutely anything.
Google has long been expected to unveil a revamped version of Chrome OS that helps rid the latter of its apparent flaws. It is quite possible that Pigweed could be an early working name for such a future OS that powers Google’s laptops. It is also likely that Pigweed will support the company’s Fuchsia OS in some way or another, particularly since Fuchsia is expected to be an all-round OS that also plays a hand in the company’s IoT portfolio.