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Gadgets: The cool and not-so-cool tech of 2011

Last updated on: January 10, 2012 13:43 IST

Gadgets: The cool and not-so-cool tech of 2011

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US-based Get Ahead reader Rangaprabhu Parthasarthy takes us through the hits and misses in the gadget world last year in response to our reader invite.

Technology evolves at a very rapid pace. As a result, every year offers a significant leap forward from the previous year(s). 2011 was no different. All the major players in the game put their best step forward. In addition, they showed hints of what is to come in 2012. Here is a look back at technology in 2011 and what it means for 2012.

The cool stuff:

iPad2

The original iPad launched a new product category in 2011. iPad2 sealed it for Apple. It owns the tablet market. Android is making its way into the business but is not getting the kind of traction that the iPad line has. Expect an iPad3 in 2012 with better cameras, better display, and a thinner design and with Siri.

Also Read: Get Ahead Gadgets and Gaming

Reader Invite

Are you a gadget/gaming wizard/afficianado? Would you like to write on gadgets, gaming, the Internet, software technologies, OSs and the works for us? Send us a sample of your writing to gadgetsandgaming@rediffmail.com with the subject as 'I'm a tech wizard/afficianado' and we will get in touch with you.




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Gadgets: The cool and not-so-cool tech of 2011

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Long Term Evolution

In the US, LTE (Long Term Evolution) technology deployment went truly nationwide with carrier Verizon's aggressive push. The other major carrier, AT&T Wireless joined the bandwagon towards the end of the year. For once, LTE is launching first in the US before Europe and Asia (with the exception of South Korea). It will be sometime before LTE launches all over the world but the promise of 40 Mbps downlink speeds is worth waiting for.

Also Read: Get Ahead Gadgets and Gaming

Reader Invite

Are you a gadget/gaming wizard/afficianado? Would you like to write on gadgets, gaming, the Internet, software technologies, OSs and the works for us? Send us a sample of your writing to gadgetsandgaming@rediffmail.com with the subject as 'I'm a tech wizard/afficianado' and we will get in touch with you.




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Gadgets: The cool and not-so-cool tech of 2011

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Windows Phone

Microsoft's answer to Apple's iOS and Google's Android, Windows Phone 7 offered a real meaningful alternative to iOS and Android with its 7.5 Mango update. With Nokia launching its Lumia line (710 and 800) with Windows Phone 7 OS and the soon to be announced high-end Lumia 900, the world is starting to take notice of Windows Phone 7.

This collaboration between Microsoft and Nokia will start spreading all across Asia and Europe with multiple phones at different price points in 2012. If you haven't heard of Windows Phone 7, be prepared to hear about it soon. In addition, Microsoft is preparing its first truly universal operating system offering for both mobile and PC markets- Windows 8. This is expected to be a giant leap forward for Microsoft.

Phones with Windows 8 won't probably launch until the end of 2012 at the earliest but it is one of the more anticipated events for the year. Windows 8 is also expected to give Apple and Google a major challenge in the tablet space where there is a big market for a true Windows experience but in a touch-based portable platform.

Also Read: Get Ahead Gadgets and Gaming

Reader Invite

Are you a gadget/gaming wizard/afficianado? Would you like to write on gadgets, gaming, the Internet, software technologies, OSs and the works for us? Send us a sample of your writing to gadgetsandgaming@rediffmail.com with the subject as 'I'm a tech wizard/afficianado' and we will get in touch with you.




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Gadgets: The cool and not-so-cool tech of 2011

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Siri

Never before has voice recognition tech gone so mainstream with a category leading device. Apple launched iPhone4S with Siri which completely changed the ball-game. It is a big leap forward.

Expect Siri to get better in 2012 as it builds its database with more usage. Given the hardware requirements for Siri, don't expect it to move downstream to older iOS devices but once iPhone5 launches later this year and iPhone4S gets cheaper, it will truly spread its wings all over the world.

Also Read: Get Ahead Gadgets and Gaming

Reader Invite

Are you a gadget/gaming wizard/afficianado? Would you like to write on gadgets, gaming, the Internet, software technologies, OSs and the works for us? Send us a sample of your writing to gadgetsandgaming@rediffmail.com with the subject as 'I'm a tech wizard/afficianado' and we will get in touch with you.



Tags: Siri

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Gadgets: The cool and not-so-cool tech of 2011

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Google+

A social Google arrived with the launch of Google+. Google shrugged off a bunch of experimental products and put its weight behind a new CEO and a social product, Google+.

While much of India is familiar with Google's past social experiment, Orkut, it never took off in the rest of the world. Google+ is far more integrated with the rest of Google and the integration will continue to grow in 2012.

2012 will be when all of Google aligns around Google+.

Also Read: Get Ahead Gadgets and Gaming

Reader Invite

Are you a gadget/gaming wizard/afficianado? Would you like to write on gadgets, gaming, the Internet, software technologies, OSs and the works for us? Send us a sample of your writing to gadgetsandgaming@rediffmail.com with the subject as 'I'm a tech wizard/afficianado' and we will get in touch with you.



Tags: Google , CEO , India

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Gadgets: The cool and not-so-cool tech of 2011

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Cloud Computing

Cloud computing officially became a necessary part of every major technology product. It is no longer an after thought. While cloud services are not yet big in Asia given the infrastructure issues and legal requirements, expect cloud offerings to spread in 2012.

Also Read: Get Ahead Gadgets and Gaming

Reader Invite

Are you a gadget/gaming wizard/afficianado? Would you like to write on gadgets, gaming, the Internet, software technologies, OSs and the works for us? Send us a sample of your writing to gadgetsandgaming@rediffmail.com with the subject as 'I'm a tech wizard/afficianado' and we will get in touch with you.



Tags: Asia

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Gadgets: The cool and not-so-cool tech of 2011

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Google Chrome

Google Chrome grew from strength, even as Microsoft launched its most meaningful IE with IE9. In the US, Google launched Chromebooks- laptops that lived purely on the cloud with no local storage and no installed software.

On the browser front, expect IE to continue to lose marketshare to Safari (on mobile) thanks to the surging popularity of Apple products, Chrome (on PC) and Firefox (everywhere).

IE9, the latest from Microsoft has garnered good reviews but Chrome and Firefox have the mind share of the hardcore users all over the world now.

Also Read: Get Ahead Gadgets and Gaming

Reader Invite

Are you a gadget/gaming wizard/afficianado? Would you like to write on gadgets, gaming, the Internet, software technologies, OSs and the works for us? Send us a sample of your writing to gadgetsandgaming@rediffmail.com with the subject as 'I'm a tech wizard/afficianado' and we will get in touch with you.




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Gadgets: The cool and not-so-cool tech of 2011

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HTML 5

If you haven't heard about it yet, you will hear a lot of it in 2012. There will be some hype but this is the next big step.

Also Read: Get Ahead Gadgets and Gaming

Reader Invite

Are you a gadget/gaming wizard/afficianado? Would you like to write on gadgets, gaming, the Internet, software technologies, OSs and the works for us? Send us a sample of your writing to gadgetsandgaming@rediffmail.com with the subject as 'I'm a tech wizard/afficianado' and we will get in touch with you.



Tags:

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Gadgets: The cool and not-so-cool tech of 2011

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Ultrabooks

Intel finally gave its complaining OEMs a way to fight the continuing success of MacBooks (Pro and Air) with the Ultrabook line. This will be a big story in 2012- not in the front pages but in its proliferation across the world.

Also Read: Get Ahead Gadgets and Gaming

Reader Invite

Are you a gadget/gaming wizard/afficianado? Would you like to write on gadgets, gaming, the Internet, software technologies, OSs and the works for us? Send us a sample of your writing to gadgetsandgaming@rediffmail.com with the subject as 'I'm a tech wizard/afficianado' and we will get in touch with you.




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Gadgets: The cool and not-so-cool tech of 2011

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The Not So Cool Stuff:

Research In Motion

The Blackberry maker had a tough year with rapidly declining sales and a failure in the tablet market with the Playbook. Blackberry is still selling well across the world, primarily driven by the exploding use of BBM.

This will start getting significantly challenged by alternate non-SMS based messaging services like iMessage from Apple, Google+ messenger on Android and Facebook Messenger across platforms. RIM will have its task cut-out for 2012.

Also Read: Get Ahead Gadgets and Gaming

Reader Invite

Are you a gadget/gaming wizard/afficianado? Would you like to write on gadgets, gaming, the Internet, software technologies, OSs and the works for us? Send us a sample of your writing to gadgetsandgaming@rediffmail.com with the subject as 'I'm a tech wizard/afficianado' and we will get in touch with you.



Tags: BBM , SMS , RIM , Apple , Blackberry

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Gadgets: The cool and not-so-cool tech of 2011

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Adobe Flash

A big standoff with Apple didn't work favorably for Adobe and Flash is slowly its way out. Expect Adobe to do better in 2012, now that it has formally called it quits on Flash.

Youtube content is getting fully converted into HTML 5 based. While Flash is still being used in many websites all over the world and is still a tool of choice for rich media content, with the uptick of HTML 5, Flash will slowly but steadily disappear from the radar.

Also Read: Get Ahead Gadgets and Gaming

Reader Invite

Are you a gadget/gaming wizard/afficianado? Would you like to write on gadgets, gaming, the Internet, software technologies, OSs and the works for us? Send us a sample of your writing to gadgetsandgaming@rediffmail.com with the subject as 'I'm a tech wizard/afficianado' and we will get in touch with you.




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Gadgets: The cool and not-so-cool tech of 2011

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iPhone 4S

For all the Apple fanboys who offer explanations on how awesome the new camera is and Siri, the product refresh was trivial and not worth a costly upgrade.

Expect iPhone 5 in 2012 with a total redesign. It also fits well with Apple's 2-year design refresh cycle.

Also Read: Get Ahead Gadgets and Gaming

Reader Invite

Are you a gadget/gaming wizard/afficianado? Would you like to write on gadgets, gaming, the Internet, software technologies, OSs and the works for us? Send us a sample of your writing to gadgetsandgaming@rediffmail.com with the subject as 'I'm a tech wizard/afficianado' and we will get in touch with you.



Tags: Siri , Apple

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Gadgets: The cool and not-so-cool tech of 2011

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Android Honeycomb

Android OS Honeycomb was a rushed and half baked product. It had to release quickly to counter the rapid ascension of the original iPad. Thankfully Google started fixing the OS with the 2011 year end launch of Android 4.0 Ice-Cream Sandwich.

ICS is definitely the right step forward for Android developers wanting to integrate their phone and tablet app offerings. ICS will make its way to all major Android products in 2012 -- tablets and smartphones.

Low and mid-end devices will continue to use Gingerbread or Honeycomb.

Also Read: Get Ahead Gadgets and Gaming

Reader Invite

Are you a gadget/gaming wizard/afficianado? Would you like to write on gadgets, gaming, the Internet, software technologies, OSs and the works for us? Send us a sample of your writing to gadgetsandgaming@rediffmail.com with the subject as 'I'm a tech wizard/afficianado' and we will get in touch with you.




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Gadgets: The cool and not-so-cool tech of 2011

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Nokia

Nokia had a tough year as it saw receding sales across its mid and high end products. Stephen Elop, CEO of Nokia announced a phasing out of Symbian from most Nokia devices and the move to Microsoft Windows Phone platform.

Nokia Windows Phone devices launched in the second half of 2011 with Lumia 710 and 800 and while Nokia is still a shadow of its formal self, the company itself will survive with this move to Windows Phone OS.

Also Read: Get Ahead Gadgets and Gaming

Reader Invite

Are you a gadget/gaming wizard/afficianado? Would you like to write on gadgets, gaming, the Internet, software technologies, OSs and the works for us? Send us a sample of your writing to gadgetsandgaming@rediffmail.com with the subject as 'I'm a tech wizard/afficianado' and we will get in touch with you.




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Gadgets: The cool and not-so-cool tech of 2011

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webOS or how to kill a promising platform

HP and its then CEO, Leo Apothekar did everything in their power and succeeded in killing a promising platform in webOS. Much of the world did not see any webOS products to see the kind of promise it had.

HP says it is open-sourcing webOS and this will possibly result in some interesting webOS products from third party companies in the future.

Also Read: Get Ahead Gadgets and Gaming

Reader Invite

Are you a gadget/gaming wizard/afficianado? Would you like to write on gadgets, gaming, the Internet, software technologies, OSs and the works for us? Send us a sample of your writing to gadgetsandgaming@rediffmail.com with the subject as 'I'm a tech wizard/afficianado' and we will get in touch with you.




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Who we lost in 2011?

The death of Steve Jobs is undeniably the event that shook the tech industry in 2011. It wasn't all that surprising given his health problems of late but it was still way too soon for the industry to lose a visionary. He will be sorely missed.

The death of Dennis Ritchie, the father of C programming language and Unix OS. In a way, he built the foundation that helped Jobs build some of his cool products.

Also Read: Get Ahead Gadgets and Gaming

Reader Invite

Are you a gadget/gaming wizard/afficianado? Would you like to write on gadgets, gaming, the Internet, software technologies, OSs and the works for us? Send us a sample of your writing to gadgetsandgaming@rediffmail.com with the subject as 'I'm a tech wizard/afficianado' and we will get in touch with you.




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