Apple unveiled the iPad to mixed reviews – no usb port, no touch camera, no GPS and not much of anything else. Critics be damned, the iPad has proven a roaring commercial success for Apple demonstrating yet again that form over substance wins every time.
Google’s Buzz creates major embarrassment for users worldwide when it automatically reconnects ex-girlfriends/boyfriends, husbands/wives with an automated, follow algorithm blowing in an icy blast from the past. Buzz took your email contacts and automatically connected you and displayed your profile content, untangling years of trying to forget “that” period of your life while providing fuel for “Bunny Boiling” antics of spurned lovers and existing company colleagues.
A quiet month – Mark Zuckerberg on vacation with Bill Gates, Sergey Brin, Larry Page and Steve Jobs.
US Supreme Court rules in favor of Comcast in net neutrality case. Comcast and other networks are within their rights to throttle back bandwidth to users of peer-to-peer file sharing networks (in this case BitTorrent P-to-P). FCC wades in with new regulatory proposals but backs off as both sides inflame the debate.
Google re-launches Wave as it seeks to penetrate the social networking market. Practically no-one knew what to do with it, which is why it got pulled three months later. Google’s MayDay algorithm changes rock the SEO world with numerous top ranking companies falling from their perches, albeit temporarily for most.
Apple iPhone 4 is launched but suffers teething problems with the OS and aerial issues. Steve Jobs is irked because of a leaked iPhone getting into the hands of tech bloggers Gizmodo and stealing his thunder.
HTC launches the first 4G phone but most carriers have still not upgraded their networks yet for superfast data speeds. HTC partners with Sprint for 4G with T-Mobile launching MyTouch 4G soon after on its own network. Verizon follows with 4G in major US cities but launches no 4G handsets of its own.
Google launch “Froyo” – the Android OS, version 2.2 – a sexier and faster upgrade of the earlier Android releases.
Windows 7 launched on new PC’s – marginally faster than the much maligned Vista, it provides a stable desktop environment without suffering the negative publicity of Vista. Bill Gates must have sighed in relief after having agreed to give most of his wealth away in a charity campaign.
The US Copyright Office declares unlocking iPhones or “jailbreaking” to be legal in a blow to Apple’s protection position. Hackers have a free reign for consumers looking to free their Apple iPhone, though Apple sales appear unaffected.
The BIG news of the year is the Bing/Yahoo! deal in which Yahoo! “outsources” backend search to Bing. One commentator observes this deal will make Yahoo! Yelp in what is a takeover in all but name.
Google Instant revealed in challenge to Facebook and Bing but notable for the changing Google logo which makes everyone want one. Bing increases market share and gets a backend software upgrade courtesy of Microsoft, while Facebook continues maneuvering with ad platform and talk of search engine facilities.
So does The Social Network, loosely charting the rise of a scantily disguised Facebook from Harvard dorm room to 500 billion users worldwide. Favorite quote, “Do I have your attention?” – “No, you have just the modicum of my attention your clients and your lawsuit deserve. My attention is back at the office where we are creating something you and your clients do not have the intellectual capacity to even begin to understand.”
No chance the rumors of Zuckerberg having a big ego are true then
Black Friday and Cyber Monday break spending records for online retailers and customers, underlining the importance of the channel and the need for SEO efforts to optimize sales. Google Voice is ported to the Apple iPhone, while Gmail users get to make one million voice calls within 24 hours of the service being launched. Google’s Buzz finally lies down and dies after a class action lawsuit is settled by Google for $8.5 million, with no compensation to users, just privacy groups and of course the lawyers. Ask.com bites the dust after disposing of Jeeves in 2006 – I hope they fired the MBA wunderkind who originally thought up that “good” idea. Blekko, a new search engine, released out of beta testing – now you don’t have to hide your social embarrassment at not getting an invite to begin with.
Facebook announces launch of “email” tool for use on the social network in a direct challenge to Gmail and everyone else. Zuckerberg predicts world domination by 2012 - is this what the Mayans considered to be the end of the world?
Who cares about Facebook privacy issues – Mark Zuckerberg made Time’s “Man of the Year” 2010.
Google goes on a buying spree but is rebuffed in a $6 billion bid for Groupon but tickles consumers with Motorola tablet demo running Android 3.0. Yahoo! announces hundreds of employees to be made redundant in massive layoffs as operation is trimmed. Names like Delicious to go in clear out in wake of Bing partnership. AOL buys up Pictela, a web ad platform and rolls out revised MapQuest tool allowing user editing, but AOL’s impact on 2010 is a far cry from its glory days.
One thing we all need to bear firmly in mind – this is history. 2011 is all that’s important from here on in.
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays – see you in 2011.