1 – The SOPA stopped
The Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) is a regulation proposed in the United States with the objective of fighting online piracy and defending intellectual property. To do this, it included several measures that were considered restrictive for media freedom and would cause a level of censorship on the internet equivalent to what takes place in autocratic countries. Google, Wikipedia, Mozilla, Reddit and other organisations have campaigned against the regulation. It has also met a frosty reception with the public. The House of Judiciary Committee have decided to postpone the decision until a better solution can be found.
2 – Facebook IPO
Facebook, the biggest social networking company in the world, held its long awaited IPO on May 2012. The public offering turned out to be one of the biggest in history and the biggest in internet history with over $100 million of market capitalization. However, it seems like the initial hype has not been followed by growth or at least a stable position. Instead, investors have considered that the initial price of the shares, $38, was too high and the stock price has suffered a sharp devaluation, being currently around $26.
3 – Apple Maps
Apple is usually considered as a company that puts quality and user experience at the heart of their products. Apple Maps was not one of them. The company proudly announced that the new app would come by default with their new operating system iOS6. Rather than usurp Google Maps, the app has been the butt of many jokes. The app was riddled with bugs such as suddenly renaming Berlin as “Schoeneiche”.
4- Microsoft Surface
Although it was officially launched just before Christmas, Microsoft’s new tablet is not setting the tablet world alight. The iPad’s grip on the market is around 43% and being eroded by Samsung and Amazon who found their own place in this tough marketplace some time ago. If the Microsoft Surface was ahead of its competitors, that wouldn’t be a problem, but its performance is below par compared to other devices. Windows 8 is also not established enough as a trustworthy OS for users to make the switch.
5 – Bing Integration with Facebook
In the middle of 2011 Bing launched a new service that was meant to change the way users search online by creating a partnership with Facebook and turning the search process into a social one. In 2012 Bing continued its integration with Facebook by launching a social sidebar for the search engine, and also included the ability to search for friends and pictures in Bing. In theory it is a good idea but it has not been very well received by the general public. The feature has now been removed.
6 – PS Vita
Mobile gaming consoles have been under threat by smartphones and tablets for some time, and 2012 may be recognised as the year that they began to die. The PS Vita was released globally at the beginning of 2012 and the reviews from technology and gaming magazines were excellent. However, it hasn’t been enough to push the sales of the device to the expected levels. Ultimately tablets and smartphones can provide an experience beyond gaming for similar costs.
7 – Facebook Reach Generator
Facebook announced in February 2012 that they were rolling out a new ad type that would increase the frequency with which brand posts would appear on the users’ timeline, therefore increasing their reach. The company removed it from the ad choices only 6 months later and substituted it for their new promoted posts, which provide a similar service. The main reason why marketers seemed reluctant to use it was because it required them to pay on an on-going basis when there was no evidence that it delivered the promised value.