What Impressed Us in 2012
It’s that time again when we slowly need to get used to writing a new number when mentioning dates; luckily thanks to our smart devices we don’t need to go out and look for a 2013 wallet calendar, unless we really want to. It’s that time when we look back at what happened this year, with all the goods and bads, and anxiously look forward to what next year might bring.
As usual here at Pocketnow we’re happy to tell you what we think, and we’re excitedly waiting to hear your opinions, in our upcoming series which will contain both 2012 recaps and 2013 predictions.
We’ll have something for everyone! Every day this week expect a new piece gathering the thoughts of our team members regarding the topic at hand. We’re concluding our series with what impressed us this year and here’s what the Pocketnow team members think:
The way Microsoft was able to keep their Surface tablet a secret so well was pretty impressive in 2012. I’m also very impressed with all of Nokia’s innovation in 2012; the 42 megapixel PureView camera, optical image stabilization in the Lumia 920, a commitment to wireless charging, highly sensitive screens, rugged build quality, beautifully colorful designs, and never-before-seen software innovations.
I’ve gotten used to the secrecy of the industry and the importance of the element of surprise. Apple was a champion and other companies followed the example to the letter. However, this year, it was impressive that almost nobody managed to keep things secret anymore, whether we talk about the iPhone 5, iPad mini and iPad 4, the Nexus 4 and the Nexus 10, or manufacturers and products in between.
Something different, still a somewhat negative note though: I was a fan of the Padfone concept since the early days. I loved the product when I met it at MWC. It was an impressive innovation. I’m surprised it didn’t take off to become something major.
On a more positive note, I’ve been known in certain circles (hint: the Pocketnow Weekly Podcast) as a Nokia 808 PureView fan. The 41-megapixel camera we’ve managed to see at MWC, followed by our review, is one impressive piece of tech. It might be the only one of its kind and the concept, as well as the phone, might soon turn into a “collector’s item” but it is definitely the most impressive for me this year.
Jelly Bean! Jelly Bean fixed Android, granting it the same level of fluidity that Windows Phone and iOS are known for. Any phone upgraded to Jelly Bean is transformed.
To be honest, Android surprised me the most this year and in three different ways. I had tried to love Android so much since Froyo, and it was always hit or miss depending on the device I received.
First off, Jelly Bean changed my perspective of Android. It truly is what Android was meant to be since day one. The culmination of a true success story. Google should be proud. I have truly become an Android fan thanks to it.
The second thing that impressed me is the Nexus 7. Never has a product driven so much desire from me. A mix between power and price tag just possessed me to buy it from day one, and even though I’d prefer better color on the screen, I’ve learned to live with it.
Third, the Galaxy S III. After being a guy that cared less of any previous Galaxy device launched, Samsung did something very right with the Galaxy S III. They made it a style statement just as Levi’s did with jeans. It made a guy like me, who didn’t give a damn of any previous Samsung device, go crazy over getting one for my own. Trully an impressive effect that these three Android scenarios have left in me in 2012.
The biggest news out of 2012 was the rise of high-definition screens on our mobile devices. Call them Retina displays, high PPI, or high pixel density, the result is the same: beautiful, pixel-free imagery on our smartphones and tablets.
It’d be nice to call out a little-engine-that-could here, with a tip of the cap to Nokia or to HTC, but another company blew both of those out of the water in 2012, and that company’s name was Samsung. From the absolutely stunning mind-share and marketing blitz of the Galaxy S III, to the audacious PR push behind the Galaxy Note II, 2012 was a year of blockbuster sequels for Samsung — and the year Android skins became more than mild nuisances thanks to UI layers like TouchWiz. Samsung may not have hit all the right notes – Nature UX is still pretty cartoony, and the company’s hardware often focuses on looks over solid build quality – but the company’s raw determination has resulted in its utter domination of the non-Nexus Android space. That’s a feat to admire.
Chief News Editor
Surface may not have arrived with the impact Microsoft wanted it to, but of all the product launches this year, that was easily the one that captivated me the most. Between the kickstand and the keyboard cover, it looked exactly how I think I wish every tablet did. Combine that with the great job Microsoft did at keeping it under wraps (compared to Apple, which has just turned into a sieve), and it generated all the buzz Microsoft could have hoped for.
Second to that, the Nexus 4/10/7-3G launch was pretty darn impressive on it own. We weren’t even expecting any news that day, after Google canceled its press event, but all of a sudden, there they were, with top-tier hardware specs and some of the most attractive prices you could ask for.
The Pocketnow Reader
Let us know of your thoughts in the comments below. Upvote your favorites and we’ll update this post to reflect what You think was the most impressing thing in 2012. It can be anything: a product, a software, a story, an event, etc. Top three upvoted will make it here, you know, for posterity!
Update: According to comments, upvotes minus downvotes, The Pocketnow Reader was impressed in 2012 by the HTC Windows Phone 8X, HD displays, Microsoft Surface, and Nokia 808 PureView . If you don’t agree, contribute in the comments with your own take, upvote or downvote.