A boatload of products, trends, and people in the tech sector really disappointed us this year. In the spirit of the season, however, we won't single out any individuals here. Instead, we'll focus on the products and trends that made us sick.
This year was rough for the technology industry. From anxiety-inducing social networks and buggy mobile devices to glitchy operating systems and killer driverless cars, we had it all.
Join us on this miserable tour down bad memory lane. And here's to looking forward to a better new year in 2019.
Facebook: Unsecured and unethical
If anything could be classified as tech that sucks this year, it would have to be social networking. Facebook has had the majority of the suckage attention, whether it has been its serious security breaches that compromised the privacy and personal data of over 87 million users or its compromised ethics in hiring opposition research firms to attack billionaire George Soros, who has been one of their most notable critics.
Twitter: Haven for hate
Facebook may have the most public embarrassment to deal with, but everyone's favorite screeching feed has also been not without its controversy. Twitter has been under fire for allowing actual Nazis and white supremacists to tweet with impunity and had been permitting racist and conspiracist agitators such Alex Jones (and well as the President of the US) to thrive on its service. Only after repeated and prolonged high-pressure appeals by high-profile users to the service's founder, Jack Dorsey, did the company remove Alex Jones's account.
Google Project Dragonfly: Making information selectively accessible
Google tried to keep it secret, but its secret program to cooperate with the Chinese government to create a censored search engine has really made the company look awfully bad and has prompted walk-outs, protests, and high-profile resignations. Remember when the search giant's mission was "to organize the world's information and make it universally accessible and useful?"
Google Project Maven: What happened to "Don't be evil?"
A recent disclosure of the company's involvement in a Department of Defense project to develop computer vision systems for warfare has put the company under tremendous ethical scrutiny.
Google+: Sorry we exposed your data, we're closing up shop
Google's social platform, which was never really able to galvanize its user base like Facebook or Twitter since launching in June 2011, had been in the doldrums since its former head of social, Vic Gundotra, went off to become CEO of connected medical devices company AliveCor. Google finally decided to put it out of its misery after a highly publicized security breach that exposed the data of up to half a million users, and will be winding the service down over a 10-month period.
Google Pixel 3: Maybe you should not have been so cheap with the memory
That expensive Pixel 3 you bought has been experiencing photo-saving issues and has been crashing likely due to the fact that Android is extremely resource-intensive, and the device has only been equipped with 4GB of RAM when compared to most of its competitors on the market that have 6GB or 8GB of RAM. Cheap, Google. Real cheap.
Google Pixel Slate: A Glorified Chromebook
This expensive $600 to $1,600 iPad and Microsoft Surface Pro competitor running Chrome OS is simply just a glorified Intel-powered touchscreen ChromeBook and lacks decent application support, because Android tablet apps never really took off in the first place. Instead we are stuck with Google's Progressive Web Apps and for the most part, Android smartphone apps, which look like garbage when they scale because Material Design has not been implemented by third-party developers.
Google Play Store: Not exactly an impregnable fortress
It seems the Play Store is utterly infested with malware that will hijack your phone and serve you ads. Isn't that special?
iPhones and iPads: Nothing's too big to fail
The latest crop of Apple iOS devices are technical marvels, but they have now become so expensive that you practically have to get a second mortgage now to afford them, and we may be witnessing the peak of technical advances with these products. While the company will always have its dedicated fans, demand for the devices has been waning considerably. It will be even more of a challenge for Cupertino if President Donald Trump gets his way with increased tariffs on Chinese manufactured goods.