2010 was another great year for tech. The rise in tablet computing, an unannounced device was lost in a bar and sold to a gadget blog and Nintendo accomplished 3D without glasses in a mass-market device. It’s all here in our top 10 most memorable mobile computing moments of 2010.
Have a look at our list after the jump:
1) The iPad is Announced
We know, we know…the iPhone blog lists the iPad announcement as the number one moment this year, but there’s a lot more to it than that. We all knew it was coming, but no one knew for sure what it was going to be called. Was it going to be the iPad? The iSlate? Then there were the blurry leaked photos, but it wasn’t like seeing the device in action. The device sold like crazy, but what was truly cool was that it popularized the tablet device and has since spawned a slew of tablet computers running on other operating systems. Still, this is the device that Newsweek says passed the “Mom test.” They were right, even my mom was reading about the iPad that day, and she’s the least tech-friendly person I know.
Then there was the name, “iPad.” The device became the butt of many jokes around the internet, because the name sounded like some sort of feminine hygiene product. Like Nintendo’s Wii, the jokes were soon forgotten when the thing became recognized as a success.
2) iPhone 4 is Lost at a Bar
Apple is notoriously secretive when it comes to their products. That’s why this one was a huge deal. To this day, it’s not 100 percent clear how that iPhone came into the hands of Gizmodo editor Jason Chen. What we do know is that an Apple employee was separated from an iPhone 4 prototype he was field testing. Whether it was stolen, forgotten or misplaced, we don’t know. We also know that Gizmodo paid $7,000 for the phone and Chen’s equipment was confiscated by the po-po. As far as we know the investigation is still ongoing, and the people involved have probably been instructed by their attorneys to keep their mouths shut about the ordeal.
Another cool result was that a tech blog got the scoop before any of the major news outlets even knew what was going on.
3) Nintendo Showcases the 3DS
Nintendo announced the 3DS in late March. The announcement seemed very tossed together and rushed, perhaps to avoid a press leak. Still we were all left wondering about this “glasses-free 3D.” How was it possible? All we knew was that we would learn more at E3 2010. And Nintendo delivered.
Perhaps other mobile devices and smartphones will follow suit. We think this is a good opportunity for them to gauge the market based on the reception of the 3DS.
4) Android Marketshare Grew in the US
This was actually very cool as well. The Android’s popularity is growing in the US. It’s quickly becoming popular, and giving some much necessary competition to the iOS platform. Furthermore, with Froyo, Android has finally become a mobile OS we can appreciate. Gingerbread seems to me making things even better.
5) Adobe Runs Silly Ad Campaign ‚ÄúWe Love Apple‚Äù
After the iPad was announced, we all realized that it doesn’t do Flash. That’s because Steve Jobs said it’s a resource hog, and that when a Mac crashes, it’s usually because of Flash. Those were some harsh words flung from one tech company to the other, but Adobe tried to take the “friendly” approach.
So what did they do? Adobe launched their strange “We Love Apple” ad campaign. It doesn’t seem that it was very successful, but they’d probably say otherwise seeing as how we named it as one of our memorable moments.
6) HP Buys Palm
This was a huge deal when it happened: HP acquired the ailing palm for $1.2 billion. We were all wondering where things were going from here. After all, webOS is one of our favorite mobile operating systems.
We were anticipating some amazing things, and what did we get? HP is making webOS-powered printers! Yup, printers. The kind HP always makes that run out of ink and you never refill, and eventually just decide to pick up a new one for a few bucks more than the ink costs.
7) Steve Ballmer Shows off HP Slate
During Steve Ballmer’s pre-CES keynote, he showed off the HP tablet. It was a device that ran on Windows 7, but very little other than that was mentioned. Then, it disappeared. News came up from time to time, we heard it would be marketed at business, then we heard…heck, we don’t even remember what we heard at that point.
Either way, the device has finally been released, and it’s available on HP’s website for $799. However, the release was given almost no notice. As one reviewer on their product page puts it:
“I thought the HP Slate had been canceled. Imagine my surprise to see that it was not. I was following its progress because, although I like the iPad, it’s not quite what I need.”
We were also surprised to see that it’s actually being sold.
What Does 2011 Hold?
A Verizon iPhone 5? iPad 2? Tablet computers take over the industry? Who knows, but we are definitely looking forward to seeing what happens. Of course, because the iPad has already been announced, even the iPad 2 would just be a regular Apple announcement at that point. The Verizon iPhone? Now that’s going to be news.