2014 was a killer year for innovative tech products - some of which represented improvements on existing technology, while others pointed ahead to whole new worlds. Here are the top X innovative tech products of 2014 - plus X to watch out for in the year ahead!
1: Virtual reality
If Oculus Crescent sounds like a transformer, that’s appropriate. The Oculus Crescent Cove VR headset is the latest offering from the virtual reality company Facebook bought for $2bn in 2014. VR has been a perpetual flop for tech companies, but Oculus might be the ones to make a go of it, especially now the graphics and other tech is in place to support it. And with Facebook’s reach behind it, we might be hearing a lot more about it in 2015. (Alternatively, Google Cardboard offers a different take on things...
2: Virtual currency
Bitcoin came of age in 2014, and mobile payment methods like Apple Pay and similar offerings from Google and Paypal are set to make us forget, not only cash, but physical payment of any kind, even credit cards. Being able to pay directly with a smartphone sounds pretty innovative now, but by next year, it might just be normal.
3: The best of everything, ever
Apple made a desktop with the best screen ever, its near-15-million-pixel, 27 - inch iMac Retina display. Samsung’s Galaxy Note 4 has the best screen that’s ever been in a smartphone. And the iPhone 6 has the best camera ever put in a smartphone, while Android got enough of a reboot to make it a serious contender. Even already extant technologies got way better in 2014.
4: And for my next trick…
What does the coming year have up its sleeve?
Microsoft is releasing Windows 10, designed as a multiplatform OS that will work on smartphones, laptops, desktops, and even the Xbox. It’s also got a bundled browser that isn’t Internet Explorer!
Samsung expects to be able to ship a bendable phone by the end of the year. The company foresees mass-producing flexible displays before the end of 2015. And, finally, hot on the heels of the world’s largest iPad comes… a really huge, 12-inch iPad, the iPad Pro, blurring the line between laptops and tablets.