The Real Computer Turn On


I’ve often wondered, why isn’t my computer more like a lightswitch?

You turn the lightswitch on, and the ceiling light goes on.  Same with the TV.  Pretty much instant gratification.  But the computer?  Press “start,” and you have enough time to do laundry, water the lawn, or read book seven in the “Harry Potter” series, before the thing actually boots up.

Until now.

From the “Why didn’t I think of that” file, a Cupertino company called “Splashtop” just came up with a piece of software that lets you surf faster than you can say “Cowabunga.”  Turn on your computer, and you’re on the browser in, by my calculations, eight seconds. Incredible.

Now, to be fair, the Splashtop browser is not the full ‘net.  But you can personalize it to get right to Gmail, Yahoo!, Facebook, whatever, and you can be busy at work, while the rest of your computer is still setting itself up.  Whatever . . .what really counts is that you’re working in seconds, where it used to take minutes.

The technology is fairly new, but Splashtop is already getting attention.  A who’s who of VCs have already lined up, flooding the company with $38 million worth of funding.  Add to that business (by the millions) from the likes of OEM heavyweights Hewlett-Packard, Dell, Asus, LG, and Lenovo, and you’ve got one of the hottest pieces of software around.  And what that means is, in a climate of mass layoffs, Splashtop doubled its staff to 200 people this past year, and looks to double again soon.

Splashtop CEO Mark Lee calls the browser “the most critical piece of equipment” on the PC.  He, and his quickly growing company, have flat-out solved a problem that has bugged computer users for years.  In an age where we never seem to have enough time, Splashtop may have just built the ultimate time-saver.

[For more Scott Budman stories, visit http://www.nbcbayarea.com/news/business/]