Tech blunders of 2016

Jeffrey Wagner
February 10, 2017
272 Views

With each passing year comes the introduction of some impressive steps forward in technology. 2016 was no exception to this – from the rise of Virtual Reality to the continuing dominance of cloud storage software, there was some impressive tech moments in the last 12 months.

However, every high point has a low, and 2016 was no stranger to some serious tech blunders. These issues ranged from irritating to amusing, to downright dangerous. So what were these bloopers that dominated the IT and business worlds in 2016? Syntax IT Support London has listed here the top tech blunders of the past year.

Wires for your wireless headphones

As such a powerhouse in the tech world, it’s no surprise that Apple makes it onto this list – they can’t all be home runs. Last year Apple announced the launched of its first wireless headphones: the AirPods. No more need you worry about tangled wires or cables not stretching far enough – AirPods were designed to give you the privacy of headphones with the freedom of movement that speakers bring.

Unfortunately, the was one problem people seemed to cling to – aren’t these two tiny, unconnected pods really easy to lose? Some even joked that Apple should release a separate cable to reconnect the pods to the player. It was funny… until it wasn’t a joke anymore.

Yes, one week after the new design was announced tech company Speigen began selling an AirPod strap to turn your new snazzy pods into regular headphones… after you’ve spent over £100 on the AirPods themselves. Awkward!

Fakebook

Ironically, this story dominated the news and social media in the latter half of 2016. We say ironically because the story itself relates to the rise of fake news stories. Facebook was named as one of the biggest offenders, allowing unsourced articles to appear on people’s timelines making claims on a variety of topics – even the U.S Presidential Election!

That’s right, claims were made that Facebook may have had a hand in helping Donald Trump win the seat of U.S president. The problem surfaced because Facebook relied too heavily on an algorithm for their content rather than human editors, who were made redundant.  Allegations were then made that sneaky Russian operatives managed to exploit this algorithm and the result was an onslaught of news articles painting Trump as the good guy and Hillary Clinton firmly as the villain of the race.

The explosive new Samsung

This blunder gathered a lot of media attention in 2016, and it’s certainly not hard to see why.

Every new smartphone and tablet release is a big deal, and Android users waited excitedly for the release of the new Samsung Galaxy Note 7. Unfortunately, there was one fairly severe problem – it had the surprising tendency to spontaneously combust and even injure the phone’s owner in the process.

Back in October, Samsung stopped all production of their latest product following an endless stream of complaints that the device was bursting into flames due to an exploding battery. This followed the recall of over two and half million Note 7’s shortly after its release. This incident took an almost $10 billion chunk out of sales and $5 billion in profits.

And that’s not all. Alongside these two global recalls came a class action lawsuit, a ban on bringing the device on aeroplanes, and the eventual permanent discontinuation of the product.

Not only was this blunder embarrassing for Samsung, but it was dangerous for its users as well. Hopefully the tech giant learned a few lessons from this explosive error.

 

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