2017 in Review: Highs & Lows of Google, Facebook & Apple

Can you believe that 2017 is coming to a close? It seems like just yesterday we were watching the ball drop for last year’s annual celebration. Our favorite tech titans, Google, Facebook, and Apple had their fair share of highs and lows this year. Below is this year’s review of the best and worst moments for them in 2017.

Google’s Pixel High:

The pixel 2 capitalized on the previous version with a wider screen and slimmer physique. Both versions, the original and the XL, have more expansive microchips and longer battery life. However, the most recognized feature of this mobile phone is their camera. Their very own optical image stabilization (OIS) reduces the common “shakiness” encountered with different models and enhanced aperture enables the images to adjust/optimize to its natural habitat. It also has its own app that allows users to record 1.5-second video clips. Compared to the Galaxy Note and the new iPhone, the Pixel 2 claims a unique stake in the mobile market.

Google’s Spying on the Down Low:

With the standardization of artificial intelligence (AI) and smart learning, Google has been under scrutiny for discretely keeping tabs on its users. For instance, Quartz conducted an investigation that concluded Google was using cell antennas to spy on people’s whereabouts even when users turn off their location services. Moreover, the Google Home Mini was found to continually record the environment without being directed to do so. It monitored people’s private conversations and blamed it on a button that they later removed. Still, these occurrences revealed the thin line between security and downright spying.

Facebook’s Revenue Through the Roof:

Facebook’s profit and revenue have been skyrocketing throughout the year. The social platform saw nearly an 80% increase in Q1 revenue compared to last year’s Q1 revenue. It kept that pace hitting its peak in Q3 with $10.3 billion, over $4 billion greater than 2016’s Q3 of $7.01 billion. Much of the revenue came from advertising campaigns; an area that simultaneously caused Facebook some major headaches as well.

Who’s FB Ad is it Anyway?

Facebook was in the hot seat this November for allowing Russian companies to run social ads that potentially interfered with 2016’s Presidential election. Over 120 million fb users were exposed to Russian propaganda; an occurrence that resulted in company executives to testify in front of Senate. Their negligence was put on blast by members of the panel and one Senator, Al Franken, made a compelling argument saying, “How did Facebook…not make the connection that ads paid for by rubbles were paid for by Russians…How could you not connect those two dots?” There was also reason to believe that their ads instigated a riot in Houston at an Islamic Center between Muslims and anti-Islam advocates. They were recently under fire for running ads that discriminated against older audiences as well. Facebook’s digital ads was a major stumbling block for the world’s biggest social network this year.

Apple’s iPhone X

The new iPhone X from Apple has been regarded as one of the best models in the company’s history. The capabilities of the camera, such as their portrait mode, depth-mapping, enhanced zoom, and natural lighting, made it one of the most recognized cameras of 2017.  It also has facial recognition that ensures no one can use your phone beside you. Moreover, the iPhone X may be the smartest of the smartphones on the market with an “astoundingly fast A 11 Bionic processor.” Even with a price tag of $999, the company still raked in over $50 billion worth of revenue in every single product category.

Failing Apps and Maps

In an effort to compete with other music content providers, Apple Music hit the stage but left virtually as quick as it came. Nearly 50% of users who originally signed up for the app were no longer using it due to failing functions, vanishing music tracks from archives and other frustrating glitches. The company failed to convey the distinction between Apple Music and iTunes which didn’t hold up in the long run as more and more problems became prevalent. Apple Maps also had an embarrassing roll-out that, due to customer feedback, had to be corrected over 2.5 million times. It became so bad that Apple suggested consumers use rival service, Google Maps until they get everything figured out.

With all this being said, it’s clear to see that no one is perfect and even the most seasoned tech leaders make mistakes. Still, the faults were balanced between some surprisingly and not so shocking advantages that blessed the titans in numerous ways. It’s hard to know what the future holds but we suspect it will possess a mixture of good and bad experiences for all us to learn from.

Which ones from the list were the most memorable for 2017? Is there anything you would add to the list? Drop us a note and let us know. We would love to hear from you.

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