This year gave us some of our favorite tech yet, but it wasn’t good news for all.
As with every year, companies went out of business, apps shut down and tech toys disappeared from store shelves for good. From VCRs and Pebble to Vine and Vessel and Meerkat, 2016 gave us plenty of tech fatalities.
Let’s take a minute to remember all the tech “weve lost” this year.
The Headphone Jack
Okay, yeah, technically the 3.5 mm jack is still around, but Apple’s decision to jettison the venerable audio port from the iPhone 7 is already inspiring other manufacturers( HTC and Motorola among them) to do the same. Its days are definitely numbered.
The vision of a wireless future in which headphones no longer tether us to our devices, audio connections that are crystal-clear and reliable is obligating. But in the existing, it’s hard to see this cordless nirvana through all the dongles.
Vines death came as no surprise to the community of creators who for a long time called it their creative home. But many was currently disappointed when Twitter announced plans to axe the video app it acquired in 2013. In its heyday, many big name digital influencers rose to fame thanks to Vine. A handful of Vine stars even lived on the same floor of a building in Hollywood, on Vine Street( yes, truly ). However, Twitter lately said it plans to keep Vine alive( kind of) with a pared-down Vine Camera app. -Saba Hamedy
For a brief moment, Samsung was unstoppable. The company launched its Galaxy Note7 to glowing reviews. Mashable even called it the before repealing its Mashable Choice award. The Note7 had everything you could want in a beautiful, premium telephone, including a headphone jack. But the ambitious telephone, aimed at taking down Apple’s iPhone 7, literally went up in flames almost as fast as it rocketed to the top.
Defective batteries and an extremely ambitious design with tight tolerances are believed to be the reasons for the Note7’s death. Though well never know if the Note7 would have turned the tide in Androids favor, heres to hoping Samsung learned some valuable lessons and the Note 8 is a safer telephone for all. -Raymond Wong
If you’ve never had to handle a VCR tape before, you’re…maybe not missing out. In July, Japan’s Funai Electric, the world’s last surviving VCR maker, gale down the manufacture of the dated video cassette recording format 40 years after the first VCR was made.
Funai, which started making VCRs 30 years ago, used to sell tens of millions of the devices at the format’s peak, but could only move 750,000 last year. VCRs were a hallmark of home recording, allowing people to tape what was airing on Tv. In the ‘9 0s, it’s been estimated that 95 percent of U.S. homes had one. -Victoria Ho
Oh Vessel, we scarcely knew thee. In 2015, Hulu founder Jason Kilar had planned a big launch for his new platform Vessel at VidCon, in hopes of entice the same young spectators who watch YouTube every day. The idea was simple: Feature videos from a variety of Internet personalities, media companies and musicians and construct them available exclusively through subscriptions for $2.99 per month. Spoiler alert: It didnt work. After a little over a year , telecommunications giant Verizon announced it is acquiring Vessels product and technology, but not the actual streaming service. -SH
Sorry, Android enthusiasts, it looks like there will never be another Nexus-branded telephone. Launched back in 2010 with the Nexus One, the brand that was once synonymous with Google and Android is no more. With the launch of the Pixel phones this year, Google made it clear it no longer wants to share the spotlight with its hardware partners. -KB
GoPro Karma Drone
After a disappointing last couple of years, GoPro was poised to rebound in 2016 with its two flagship and the long-awaited . Following a lag, GoPro eventually disclosed the Karma at a splashy global launch event, showing off its foldable design and detachable hand stabilizer. Two weeks after its launch, the reporting of Karma dronings losing power and prompted GoPro to shipped dronings, effectively killing hopes of vying with DJI’s considerably smaller foldable droning, the Mavic Pro. Better luck next year, GoPro. -RW
When everyone’s in the live video game, only the fittest can survive. Meerkat was one of the first to enter the space, and although it won headlines and celebrity users when it first emerged in 2015, it could not hold up once Twitter, Facebook and rolled out their own live streaming platforms.
After a “pivot” or two, the app from the App Store in September. The social media heavyweights are pushing real-time video hard, with Facebook paying media like CNN and Buzzfeed( and Mashable ) to use its platform. But is there enough customer craving to go around? That’s unclear, as Meerkat discovered the hard way. But don’t feeling too bad for the founders. They’ve parlayed that Meerkat hype into a new , Houseparty. – Ariel Bogle
NYT Now and Breaking News apps
As if 2016 weren’t difficult enough for the media world, news junkies lost two of the best apps for violating news alertings: NYT Now, the Newspaper of Record’s real hour news app and NBC’s Breaking News. Both apps closed this year after a multiyear running. – KB
An independent Yahoo
The once mighty Yahoo was forced to deal with an uncomfortable truth this year: Its so-called “core” business consumer apps and media properties was almost worthless due to declining ad revenue. Once CEO Marissa Mayer’s plan to spin off the company’s valuable Alibaba stock was scrapped, there was little option but to sell Yahoo at the very highest bidder.
That turned out to be Verizon, which acquired the business for $4.83 billion, objective the company’s 22 -year stretch as an independent company. The bargain still isn’t final, and there’s a chance Verizon could still back out, but Yahoo as an independent entity is finished. -KB
The watch that kickstarted the smartwatch craze is no more. What started out as a simple idea was transformed into a movement and eventually became the poster boy for Kickstarter.
Despite launching a new generation of smartwatches this July and holding the record for three of the four most funded Kickstarter projects of all time, Pebbles days were numbered as the company struggled to stay afloat. Fitbit objective up scooping it up, but even that company wasn’t interested in Pebble’s hardware.