2016 has been a particularly turbulent year for the technological panorama: automatic cars, mobile phones that explode, games that provoke the fury of the masses ... We want to look back and tell you a small summary of the technological news that have most caught our attention in this 2016 that we are already leaving behind. Are you accompanying us to the time machine?
We still remember when, three years ago, Facebook insisted on buying the Snapchat messaging service . Not even for $ 3 billion was Mr. Zuckerberg able to fool Snapchat creators Bobby Murphy and Even Spiegel. So, in a surprising twist, Facebook-owned Instagram became a revamped kind of Snapchat, creating Instagram Stories and messages that self-destruct. Now with InstagramYou can create small video clips that self-destruct after 24 hours and that your followers can see on a chronological reel, as if it were a movie. Should they have sold Snapchat? Unfair competition from Facebook?
Electric and autonomous cars take over the road
2016 has marked the beginning of what will be a milestone in driving, reducing pollution and fatal accidents: electric and autonomous cars . In August of this year, the American company nuTonomy launched the world's first autonomous taxi in Singapore. In September, the transport company Uber began a pilot test with autonomous cars that, it must be said, did not go too well. Currently, and after this test was rejected in California, they continue to circulate in Pittsburgh and San Francisco . The Tesla company ,which is also in charge of electric cars, was in charge of showing us a video in which he showed how it is to circulate with one of those cars that has already claimed its first fatality , an American citizen who was going too fast while watching a movie of Harry Potter.
The year of Pokemon Go
Few people are left in the world to have played Pokemon GO . What did this game take to have an unstoppable rise in downloads in such a short space of time? Surely the legion of fans who already had this video game, plus its original concept of augmented reality plus, of course, those who signed up, simply, to see what game it was that drove the world crazy. No less than five Guinness records has broken this Pokémon GO:
- Highest revenue generated by a game in the first month of launch: $ 260 million
- Play with more downloads in a month: 130 million downloads
- Most popular application for both iOS and Android in more than 70 countries simultaneously.
- Game that generated more revenue simultaneously during its first month of launch. In 55 of those countries, it also became the most downloaded application in the store .
- Surpassed $ 100 million in revenue in just 20 days of existence
But everything that goes up ends up going down. At the end of July this year, the active users of Pokemon GO amounted to 45 million worldwide. By the following month, they had dropped 15 million - a total of 30 million active users. A month later, in September, the application was dethroned by Clash Royale from the number 1 position in revenue for downloaded games. In November, and barely five months old, things look quite different: currently, the game is at number 72 in the Apple app store and number 10 in the Android Play Store . Despite this, Niantic,company that develops the game for Nintendo, does not cease in its efforts to continue attracting new players and to strengthen the old ones, through juicy updates, such as the new radar system, discounts on Christmas payments or the appearance of new species of Pokémon . Currently, Clash Royale is still the game that ranks 1 in profitability, with Pokémon GO remaining in an honorable third place. Gone are the days of glory but also absolute failure, as many want to predict.
Virtual reality is here to stay
In 2016, three systems made an appearance that raised the alarm on those doomsayers who claimed that virtual reality would be nothing more than the fruit of a day: Oculus Rift, PS VR and HTC Vive . It was in March when Oculus launched its virtual reality glasses at a price of 700 euros in Europe, a price perhaps somewhat high, reaching a total of 400,000 units distributed throughout the world in addition to about 100 video games for this revolutionary new system . Facebook, to which Oculus belongs , is developing its own virtual environment in which we can contact avatarsof other people in "real" environments, as well as modifying our character, taking selfies in the place we are and playing with other users. The Playstation system , PS VR has already had a greater acceptance than the Oculus, despite taking much less time on the market. And this is because if you buy a PS4 and its PS VR glasses together it has a similar cost to the Oculus Rift.
For its part, in October, Google, of course , launched its first virtual reality glasses, the Daydream View , compatible with the latest Google Pixel models and some Moto Z , at a fairly modest price of 80 euros. Samsung is not far behind and also launches its own, the Gear VR. Social networks such as Facebook, Twitter or YouTube already allow live video streaming in 360 degrees . The future, without lasts, was this.
The Galaxy Note 7 begin to explode
Bad year for the South Korean house Samsung. His new flagship phone, the Galaxy Note 7 begins to fail. And not assumable glitches like factory distorted images or screen lags. No. Its terminals begin to explode due to, according to the multinational, a problem with its battery. It was on August 31 when numerous users of a Galaxy Note 7 began to report explosions in their terminals. On September 2, it discontinued its manufacture and offered to replace the terminals with its other flagship, the S7 Edge. Airlines start banning flights if you take one of these phones with you. In this same month, Samsung has released an OTA updatethat leaves the Note 7 , literally, like a nice paperweight, given the refusal of many users to return it or make use of the proposed terminal change. In October this year, Samsung estimated its losses at almost 5,000 million euros . Little joke for a year in which things were going really well, given the good results of the S7 range of its Galaxy.
Yahoo! on the tightrope
Nor has it been a very good year for Yahoo, a company that has certainly seen better times. In September of this year it claimed to have suffered the theft of data from more than 500 million accounts and three months later, another 1 billion user accounts . It was about to be bought by Verizon for 5,000 million dollars , although this transaction, today, may be canceled due to this tremendous security flaw. Is Yahoo! to disappearance? Last year, we recall, he had losses estimated at more than 4,000 million dollars and many experts assure that their model, to this day, is quite outdated and obsolete.
Half the internet goes down
Just two months ago we lived through tremendous moments of anguish due to a wave of cyberattacks against the North American service provider DynDNS, affecting organizations such as Netflix, Amazon, Twitter or the New York Times. Users of these services were unable to access them for more than 11 hours . According to predictions, in 2017 there will be an even worse attack. We must be forewarned.
These are some of the most relevant technological news of 2016. Have we left any in the pipeline?