3 Top Online Technology Revolutions that Rocked 2009

In terms of technological highlights and the breakthrough of gadgets and applications, 2009 is probably the most successful year in a long time. This is the year when smartphones took off with the application market becoming worth over a $1 billion, everyone and his dog began to ‘tweet’ and real-time search became the new goal for software giants the world round.

Beginning of ‘The Smartphone Era’:
This time last year, there was merely the Blackberry and the iPhone, but now the market is flooded with 3G devices such as the Motorola Droid and the Palm Pre. Apple’s iPhone, in fact, became so popular that when the two year exclusivity deal with O2 ended, providers were falling over themselves to secure exclusivity. Eventually, Orange, Vodaphone and Tesco secured deals.

3 Top Online Technology Revolutions that Rocked 2009

Today, the application market, which has proved to be the cornerstone of smartphones’ popularity, is worth over a $1 billion with Google’s Android Marketplace attempting to rival Apple’s; whilst Orange, Nokia, Samsung and BlackBerry all try to stay in the race with their own app stores. With apps ranging from GPS programs to ‘finding the nearest ATM’, app stores have enabled smartphones to be ever-growing and ever-changing portable devices.

What’s more, the growth in smartphones also saw a change in operating systems. Whereas once the iPhone could claim it has the sleekest operating system on the market, Google’s Android soon changed that. With a great user interface featuring seemless intergration with Google services and super fast load times, as well as an ever growing application store, Apple now faces some serious competition in Google’s smartphones that could very well dominate the market next year.

Twitter Domination:
Last year barely anyone had heard of it (apart from Stephen Fry), today is in the world’s lexicon and has even been added to the Oxford dictionary (as well as being named the year’s most popular word). Normally associated with celebrities or political gaffes, Twitter messages – or tweets – are now used as sources by major news outlets, and the likes of the BBC and Sky now have Twitter correspondents.

Even the world’s most powerful man, President Obama, courted controversy when he said he didn’t tweet, preferring instead to use his Blackberry. However its popularity cannot be sniffed at, with both Google and Microsoft’s Bing securing deals with the social networking platform in order to boost their real time search results.

Whether you can’t get enough of the service or think its the refuse of people with too much time on their hands, you cannot ignore the rate at which Twitter has gone mainstream.

Real-time searches are the latest Fab:
Another reaction to Twitter’s rise in popularity is that the likes of Google and other search engines rapidly began to look out of date when news stations and the like began to pick up news stories from users’ tweets. This was highlighted in both the Hudson River plane crash and the Mumbai terror attacks, when both stories were broken on Twitter from users who had witnessed the events. As such, both Google and Bing have been securing real-time search elements, mainly by signed deals with Twitter, Facebook and MySpace in order to have ‘real-time’ results integrated into their search indexes.

So what does 2010 hold for us?
While mobile smart-technology may have soared this year, expect it to get even better next year. Augmented reality applications will be common place, with your phone being able to tell you the history of a building by you taking a picture of it, or even telling you if it’s available for purchase.

Also, expect netbooks to become almost as popular as PCs. Currently a quarter of all PC sales are now netbooks, but next year this will no doubt increase as people demand the diversity of their home computer, but with the portability of their smartphone.

With wi-fi becoming more and more commonplace in public, real-time searches keeping us up to date with by-the-second news and smartphones enabling us to do anything we want on the move, expect next year to take it to the next level. What do you think?

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