One element in the consumer electronic space did not slow down one bit in 2011. Product launches continued occurring in great numbers in 2011, the only difference in comparison to previous years was that their impact became much more important. I believe firmly that the reason for it stems from the economy and the economic forces at play.
BlackBerry launched a variety of products but in most cases missed the mark. Their leadership and shareholders placed such grand importance on every single product unveiled this year that it makes for a great deal of sadness looking back at it. The BlackBerry Torch 9800 was augmented by the Torch 9810 and 9860 but received a luke warm adoption by the public.
Apple did their normal thing. Launched a variety of products and services to great fanfare without missing the mark. Irrespective of how many iPhone 4S’s and iPad 2’s are sold, the year will be added in the history book for one reason and one reason only. The Cupertino behemoth and the world lost a great innovator in Steve Jobs.
Amazon unveiled their tablet, the Kindle Fire along with an updated line of Kindle eReaders. The Kindle Fire has sold millions of devices and is being seen as the real iPad competitor.
Nokia unveiled a variety of new products this year. The two that stand out in my mind are the N9 and the Lumia 800. The N9 was the last smart phone that Nokia made that featured its own operating system Symbian and the Lumia 800, the first that features the Windows Phone 7 software. Nokia did something quite drastic as well; they changed their naming conventions of their products.
Microsoft unveiled their new operating system, Windows 8 in the later part of the year. Windows 8 I think could be the software that recaptures the computer industries attention. The potential of that becoming a tablet operating system as well could help Microsoft’s entry into a category that it has had little effect in. As I mentioned, the Redmond Company partnered with Nokia to boost their mobile offering.
Intel unveiled a variety of new desktop processors to compliment their existing product lines. If I look back at 2011 for Intel, one thought appears consistently in my mind. They are no longer the defacto processor for all high end level devices.
The past year has been a great one for consumers who want to buy electronics. Lots of innovation, lots of choice and I expect the same for 2012. So will you buy an Apple iPhone 5, iPad 3 or an Asus Transformer Prime in 2012?