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Retro 2020 : The events, products and trends that made tech in 2020

Posted the 06/01/2021 08:00


Twelve months like no other. Shaken like so many others by the coronavirus, the small world of technology has not stopped turning. Here is a selection of the events that marked this very special year.

And yet 2020 had started off well: the weather was fine at the CES in Las Vegas, and hundreds of thousands of visitors flocked to the huge halls of the exhibition center to discover the innovations that were to make 2020 a reality. The coronavirus has turned everything upside down: products delayed or even cancelled, the emergence of new uses, teleworking... The virus has deeply affected the tech year, which was nevertheless particularly rich in events. You will (re)discover them in this article, necessarily not exhaustive, which looks back on the moments that marked this year apart.

1. Zoom, Meet, Teams: the explosion of videoconferencing services

It's not often that a product name becomes common language: this was the case in 2020, when "zoom in" became a common expression. Zoom, which few people knew before the pandemic, has become the star service of the year, growing from 10 to 200 million users in just a few weeks.

2. A new generation of game consoles and immediate shortages

The new Sony and Microsoft consoles, the PlayStation 5 and the Xbox Series, are among the stars of 2020. For months they have whetted our appetites with their promise of SSDs, revolutionary graphics technologies for today's and tomorrow's games... not to mention backwards compatibility with thousands of titles.

3. Tech giants in the sights of US and European authorities 

This year was marked by an exponential number of legislative texts, coupled with legal attacks against the Tech giants. This is not surprising in Europe, which has made regulation its added value in a market monopolized by the Americans and the Chinese. The RGPD, which came into force in 2018, paved the way. 

4. The launch of Disney+ with great fanfare

Launched in November 2019 in the United States, Disney+ arrived in France on April 7 after a last-minute postponement. For 6.99 euros per month, this streaming service offers access to the Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars and National Geographic catalogs. In total, more than 73 million people worldwide have subscribed to it in just one year, a colossal success undoubtedly accelerated by the confinement.

5. The StopCovid fiasco, aka TousAntiCovid 

Detecting Covid-19 contact cases in an automatic way, thanks to the Bluetooth waves of smartphones, the idea was beautiful. After two confinements, we have to admit that this kind of application has made only a small contribution in the war against the virus, here as elsewhere. Admittedly, the implementation in France was particularly slow and the debate on the protection of personal data very lively, but in the end it was a lot of noise for not much. Today, this application, renamed from TousAntiCovid, is mainly used to fill out certificates (which it does very well by the way).

6. Successful launch for Microsoft xCloud

Cloud gaming with Microsoft's sauce arrived at the end of 2020. In beta for many months, Project xCloud officially took its first steps on Android mobiles on September 15. These are the only compatible devices for the moment and you have to subscribe to the Xbox Game Pass Ultimate offer (13.99 euros/month) to enjoy it.

7. Twitter victim of an unprecedented hack

On July 15, 130 Twitter accounts of famous personalities - Elon Musk, Barack Obama, Joe Biden, Bill Gates, etc. - were launched. - were hijacked to spread a Bitcoin scam that, in a few minutes, generated payouts of more than 118,000 dollars. To pull off this incredible stunt, the hackers used an internal administration tool that they accessed by taking their social engineering credentials from some Twitter employees. Three young individuals under the age of 22, suspected of being the perpetrators of this scam, were arrested two weeks later.

8. Bitcoin breaks all records

For bitcoin holders, the year 2020 will not have been bad, far from it. The digital currency set new records, breaking the 18,000 euro mark for the first time in December. Several factors seem to have contributed to this dizzying rise. In the midst of the pandemic, Bitcoin may have acted as a safe haven, as it did for gold. In fact, several companies have bought it as an investment, such as the publisher MicroStrategy ($1.1 billion) or the insurer Massachusetts Mutual Life ($100 million). In addition, Paypal and Square have integrated Bitcoin into their payment platforms, at least in the United States.

9. The painful launch of 5G in France

The 5G was not launched until the very end of the year because of the pandemic. SFR was the first to launch, followed by Bouygues Telecom, then Orange, and finally Free Mobile.

10. Huawei sells Honor, against the backdrop of a major crisis

2020 was not the year of Huawei. Blacklisted by the American government in 2019, the Chinese giant lost this year the right to work with foreign companies dependent on American technologies. Its future is now uncertain.

Source : 01NET