Hey the year is almost over.  What happened???

Well in case you were deep into a trance or a funk, here’s what I saw as the year flew by.

 

January

Smartphone market flattens with 2013 shipments up only 5% over 2012.  1.9 billion smartphones shipped in 2013.

Yahoo Tech news portal debuts with former New York Times tech columnist David Pogue and former Washington Post tech columnist Rob Pegoraro.

Google buys smart thermostat-maker Nest for $3.2 billion.

In-app purchase by kids becomes an issue and FTC orders Apple to pay $32.5 million in refunds. 

Net Neutrality rises as a major tech issue.

Google sells Motorola to Lenovo for just under $3 billion.

 

February

Microsoft names insider Satya Nadella as its new CEO.

Yahoo provides search results using Yelp data (and later powers Firefox search).

Nokia launches an Android phone. 

Facebook buys WhatsApp for $19 billion. 

 

March

Smuggling by drones of drugs into prisons in Quebec, Canada.

GitHub harassment of a female employee.

Press starts to write very skeptical articles about Google Glass.

Facebook buys virtual reality headset maker Oculus VR for $2 billion.

 

April 

Gmail turns 10 years old. 

Amazon Fire TV launches.

Brendan Eich has to resign as CEO of Mozilla because of a 2008 contribution to California Proposition 8, which would ban gay marriage.  OKCupid.com put code in their browsers to detect Firefox code and divert Firefox surfers to a page asking them to use a different browser.

Samsung Galaxy S5 launches.

Denigration of Facebook starts, is it still relevant even though its WILDLY popular?

Nike exits wearable health monitors, dropping its Fuelband.

Microsoft becomes the second largest maker of mobile devices (by units) with 14% marketshare courtesy of Nokia buy-out.

Microsoft CEO Nadella says it’s a “mobile-first, cloud-first world”.

 

May

Bitcoin continues to roil the government (and especially the IRS) which considered them a terrorist threat due to the anonymity built into it.

Foursquare splits into Foursquare and Swarm — to spin off location check-in feature.

Net Neutrality rises with Google, Amazon, Yahoo, Microsoft and Netflix for it.  Cable ISPs naturally against it.

Europe continues to harass American tech companies, this time it’s Google and the “right to be forgotten”.

NYTimes starts crusade against Amazon as Amazon tries to negotiate lower e-book prices with publisher Hachette.

Iran bans 4 social networks: Twitter, Facebook, Instagram & WhatsApp.  Last 3 are owned by Facebook & Mark Zuckerberg which shows he knows what he’s doing.

 

June

Google continues to plow money into building out fiber optic networks for cities, selecting Portland, Oregon as a new place to connect. 

Google launches fitness service called Google Fit.

Facebook launches Snapchat rival called Slingshot.

Amazon launches Fire smartphone with AT&T.  The Fire smartphone has a 4.7 inch screen, 13 megapixel camera, 3D display and is $649 to $749 without contract. 

Blackberry licenses the Amazon App Store. 

Drones with cameras used for drone selfies, termed a “dronie”.

Microsoft launches 2nd Android phone: the Nokia X2. 

Amazon promotes Kindle tablets with 31 free apps which are normally paid and total over $100.

 

July

Intel will ship 40 million tablet processors in 2014. 

According to the Hinge dating app, Amazon employees are hotter than employees from other tech giants like Google, Apple and Facebook.

Microsoft drops its entire Android phone line.

Yahoo buys analytics company Flurry.

Microsoft lays off 14% of its workforce: 18,000 workers, mostly former Nokians in the mobile phone division acquisition. 

 

August

Tablet market flattens.

Former Internet darling Cisco cuts 8% of its 75,000 workforce (6,000 workers let go). 

Android reaches 84% global smartphone marketshare.

Instagram adds “Hyperlapse” which post-processes videos to make them steadier (a standard camcorder feature). 

 

September

Samsung Galaxy Note phablet with 5.7 inch screen debuts.

Samsung Galaxy Tab S with beautiful AMOLED display available.

“Linkrot” is a new word and means your links will no longer work because the service they point to closed down.  In this case it’s TwitPic that closes down. 

iPhone 6 launched with 4.7 inch screen. 

iPhone 6 Plus phablet launched with 5.5 inch screen.

Apple iWatch officially announced for $349.

Apple Pay announced for NFC mobile payments. 

Microsoft buys Minecraft creator for $2.5 billion.

Blackberry launches Passport smartphone which is square and the size of a real paper passport.

 

October

Google Express launches in Boston for $95/year. Local products delivered the same day.

55% of US teens using voice search.

iPad sales decline 9% in 2014-Q2 vs. 2013-Q2.

Android OS 5.0 = Lollipop is announced with 5,000 new APIs.

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella says women shouldn’t ask for raises.  He later apologizes.

The iPhone is 70% of Apple’s revenue and profit.

Apple Mac OS X 10.10 Yosemite upgrade available.

Amazon Fire smartphone declared not a hit.

Montreal woman “shocked” to see part of her breast exposed on Google Maps street view.

Google Nexus 6 smartphone pre-orders available. 

Google Nexus 9 tablet with keyboard pre-orders available.

 

November

Twitter has 500 million posts per day.

Microsoft open sources .NET platform.

Amazon and Hachette resolve e-book pricing dispute.

8,400 payphones in New York City to become WiFI hotspots for FREE WiFi. 

WhatsApp adds end-to-end encryption for all Android users, a HALF-BILLION of them. 

Old Nokia, not owned by Microsoft, announces an Android tablet with 7.9 inch screen size, manufactured in China, aluminum case, OS 5.0 Lollipop, Intel x86 CPU for $250.

Third party ride service Uber executive says Uber will investigate reporter’s private lives, then apologizes for it. 

Twitter indexes ALL of its tweets back to 2006 and makes them searchable.

Apple releases WatchKit development kit in advance of iWatch release. 

OKCupid expands its gender options to include gay, straight, bisexual, asexual, pansexual, questioning, demisexual, heteroflexible, homoflexible and sapiosexual.

Europe orders Google to “forget” searches and rewrite search history.

Google Maps 9.1 available with features aimed at travel and seeing information about your destination.

Samsung Galaxy S5 has sold 12 million units, but management had hoped for 16 million unit sales. 

 

December

2014-Q3 more Chromebooks ship to schools than iPads.

Microsoft and Barnes & Noble part ways on Nook partnership.

3D Babies will print out your unborn baby from an ultrasound to a 3-D printer for $600 to give you a fetus sculpture.

Third party ride service Uber raises $1.2 billion in venture financing, valuing the company at $40 billion.

 

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