This is part of the "2009 in Review" group writing project. To find out more about this project, please check out Daily Blog Tips.
Last year, I wrote an article detailing Ten Amazingly Accurate Tech Predictions for 2009 here on Blogcritics. At the time, the article generated pages of comments and debate, all of which centered around how insane I was. Though some of the predictions were outright crazy, several of them actually came true. Here, to get you pumped up for the 2010 version, is a recap of my predictions along with a look at how accurate they turned out to be.
1. Apple will start to lose desktop/laptop market share.
With Apple growing by leaps and bounds, my prediction seemed like an idiotic thing to assume. However, according to IDC, it was not a bad prediction at all. While sales of computers and laptops declined over 2009, some companies were able to take advantage of the smaller economy. Companies like Acer and HP released netbooks, allowing them to take control of the market. This boost in their sales harmed other companies, notably Dell and Apple. As a result, Apple's market share fell from 8.5% to 7.6%, placing them back in sixth place in the market.
Score: Robert Barga – 1, Evil Companies Out to Get Me – 0
2. Apple will release a tablet/netbook/large iPod Touch.
Let me just say that I was not alone in thinking that Apple would jump on the netbook bandwagon. Sure, they would have their own style and make it unique, but I thought that in 2009, Apple would release a netbook. Engadget, Macworld, and Crave all seemed to agree with me, making me feel better about this prediction. That said, Apple never released this product, and I got stuck looking like a moron.
Score: Robert Barga – 1, Evil Companies Out to Get Me – 1
3. The Netbook market takes off, but Windows XP remains the primary OS.
While Apple may be ignoring the netbook market, the rest of the world isn't. In 2009, the market grew an amazing seven times what it had been before, amounting to 8% of all PC shipments! While the market share was taking off, the OS inside of these machines was staying pretty stable; while Microsoft claims that 93% of the computers are running XP, Linux is claiming that 33% are running Linux. Obviously, neither side is truthful, so the proper number probably falls somewhere in the10-20% Linux range. Either way, Windows XP is still dominating the netbook OS market, and clearly will until people upgrade to Windows 7.
Score: Robert Barga – 2, Evil Companies Out to Get Me – 1
4. Microsoft will start a phone company, the iPhone will keep growing, Android will stumble.
This one seems quite hard to grade, so I will simply say majority rules. Apple continued to increase its sales of the iPhone, and the amazing smartphone took a dominant share of the market. Microsoft released a new version of Windows Mobile, but they did not start their own company, or even try to buy one. Android, though a newcomer, continued to gain as a mobile operating system. Clearly, I missed on this prediction.
Score: Robert Barga – 2, Evil Companies Out to Get Me – 2
5. Google will release a full-fledged OS, un-beta Gmail, and stop supporting Chrome.
When I wrote this post, I was somewhat joking about the un-betaing of Gmail. I assumed that the popular mail program would be in testing mode forever, and that Google would never change that. Needless to say, Google did un-beta Gmail, helping out in this prediction. Additionally, Google announced the release of an OS that will compete directly with Linux. While Google is still supporting Chrome, I feel as though I did well on this prediction.
Score: Robert Barga – 3, Evil Companies Out to Get Me – 2
6. Microsoft will release Windows 7.
While it became common knowledge that there would be an October launch in January, when I wrote the article, Windows was still claiming a January 2010 launch date. Of course, Windows 7 launched on October 22, 2009, fulfilling my prediction.
Score: Robert Barga – 4, Evil Companies Out to Get Me – 2
7. The Resurrection of HD-DVD.
Okay, so I assumed that the bad economy would jump-start a dead format. Needless to say, I was way off the ball on this. Instead of jump-starting HD-DVDs, Blu-ray players dropped in price, and the sales of Blu-rays went through the roof. While sales of HD-DVDs might still be strong on eBay, I clearly missed the target here.
Score: Robert Barga – 4, Evil Companies Out to Get Me – 3
8. All three consoles will sell less, PS3 will be pulled.
I correctly predicted that Nintendo and Microsoft would cut their prices, but never expected Sony to be able to do the same. Instead, I predicted that they would pull out of the race and start working on their next model. Instead, Sony surprised me by dropping their price to $299 and starting to get more market share. Clearly, I was wrong on this one.
Score: Robert Barga – 4, Evil Companies Out to Get Me – 4
9. Microsoft will announce the Xbox 720, and a Microsoft handheld gaming system. Sony will release the PS4.
I have nothing to say about this. I could argue that I stated this as a joke, as a wild guess, or anything like that. Of course, that would be a lie, and I would be wrong. Instead, I will just roll about in my ineptitude.
Score: Robert Barga – 4, Evil Companies Out to Get Me – 5
10. Rock Band and Guitar Hero will join, or at least release compatible controllers.
Rock Band and Guitar Hero are some of the most popular games around, but until recently, they did not work together. Instead, you had to purchase two sets of instruments, wasting money and cluttering the house. However, the new Rock Band allows you to use Guitar Hero instruments, thus easing the strain (on the room and on the wallet). Thankfully, I was right about this one — rock out.
Score: Robert Barga – 5, Evil Companies Out to Get Me – 5
So folks, there you have it. I was wrong on several predictions, but right on several others. In fact, one of the most contentious ones (Apple's market share) fell right into my hand. Sure, I might have tied the Evil Companies That Were Out to Get Me, but it was a fun fight. Come back next month to see my predictions for 2010.