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Surface, Windows RT launched but burned up in orbit
Anything "Windows" this year has been at the top of the contentious list. Microsoft may not be the Windows-making giant it once was — instead transforming into a devices and services company. But a good selection of its flagship devices struggled to get off the ground
Windows RT, the low-power ARM-based operating system, has barely taken off and forced Microsoft to take a $900 million inventory writedown on its Surface RT tablet in its fiscal fourth quarter earnings in July. The wider Surface picture isn't great either. Even the company itself said the fact it had three versions of Windows is confusing. Many still don't even know what the difference is between Windows 8 and Windows RT.
BlackBerry Z10 crashed the company into a financial brick wall
Out with the old, and in with the new. BlackBerry has burned over the past year. But it was a slow, painful, and agonizing decline. It was like watching the slowest-ever car crash. The company has vowed to clean up its act and get back on the horse.
First it was hit by a massive near-$1 billion loss as a result of the flop of its flagship BlackBerry Z10 smartphone, launched in January. And then the firm said it would put itself up for sale — so-called "strategic alternatives" — but that fell through, despite entering an agreement with an investment firm. Chief executive Thorsten Heins as a result resigned (although how far he was pushed remains unknown) and was replaced with former Sybase chief John Chen, who vowed not to "dwell on the past" and to power through financial hardship.
There is hope for BlackBerry now, however. But whether it's a case of plugging the leaks in the sinking ship, or evacuating before it goes under completely, only time will tell.
Google TV struggles; regenerates as Android TV?
Google had nothing but good intentions when it announced Google TV back in October 2010. With Intel, Sony, and Logitech on board, it had the support of giants working together to bring cheap and interactive Internet-connected television to the wider market.
Three years later, all signs point to a massive rebrand that may play into the consumer market, relaunching as Android TV.
The first major signs of trouble, aside from poor uptake and slow development, arrived in the form of Chromecast, a small USB device that allowed users to stream content from multiple devices to their televisions. It seemed for a while like the younger sibling was trying to outshine the bigger brother. Even though the product was solid and many who used it loved it, Google TV just couldn't take off. It may see its revival in Android TV, however. If that's the case, we can technically bid "adieu" to Google TV for good.