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In Memoriam: The tech that died in 2021

Nothing is everlasting on this world, particularly expertise. This previous 12 months, as we noticed some great improvements that stored us related to the surface world, we additionally misplaced quite a lot of services from the previous. A few of them had been on their deathbeds for fairly a while, others slipped to sudden deaths surprising many. The discontinuation of a product, or service shouldn’t be seen as an entire failure, nevertheless it highlights the market forces at play. In a 12 months that had its high and low factors, we take a look at the tech that we misplaced in 2021. 

LG quits the cell phone enterprise 

LG introduced in lots of firsts within the smartphone market, however referred to as its quits earlier this 12 months. A whole lot of this has to do with the complicated enterprise technique the Korean firm adopted for a few years. However it additionally places give attention to the shortage of acceptance of latest concepts on the trade stage. The South Korean behemoth launched many smartphone fashions together with the LG Wing nevertheless it by no means obtained the acknowledgment which it deserved. Some imagine LG’s efforts got here a bit late and by the point it had progressive merchandise to point out, it was too late. LG was, in truth, the world’s third-largest smartphone maker in 2013 however lately it had struggled to compete with the likes of Apple and Samsung on the premium finish of the smartphone market.  The exit of LG from the smartphone market is a loss not solely to the trade but additionally to the artistic concepts and keenness for merchandise which might be barely edgy. 

tech died in 2021, Google Loon, LG quits mobile business, HomePod dead, iMac Pro dead, Hike, periscope app, houseparty app The HomePod good speaker was first launched in 2018 for 349 USD. (Picture credit score: Anuj Bhatia/Indian Specific)

Unique Apple HomePod

Though it didn’t come as a shock to tech insiders, Apple killing the unique HomePod was all the time on the playing cards. The HomePod won’t have been a failure, nevertheless it wasn’t a smash hit both. The issue with HomePod was not its steep value, however its positioning. The HomePod is a superb speaker and it sounds great nevertheless it’s not as good as aggressive merchandise from Amazon and Google. The HomePod could have gone, however the HomePod mini exists and it’s an important little speaker. Siri nonetheless wants a bit of labor, however is that sufficient for Apple to make a robust comeback within the good speaker phase? Solely time will inform.

tech died in 2021, Google Loon, LG quits mobile business, HomePod dead, iMac Pro dead, Hike, periscope app, houseparty app The iMac Professional made its debut in 2017. (Picture credit score: Apple)

iMac Professional 

After the unique HomePod, one other system that obtained discontinued by Apple was the iMac Professional. When the iMac Professional was launched in 2017, Apple promised “Workstation-Class Efficiency in an iMac Design”. It served the aim then, however had began to look a bit pointless of late. The iMac Professional was an experimental product aimed purely on the skilled neighborhood however someplace down the road when the Mac Professional arrived two years later, the all-in-one desktop pc misplaced its goal. We don’t know if Apple has a sequel to the iMac Professional within the works, particularly when Cupertino’s complete focus is on pushing Macs with its customized silicon. The M1 iMac is okay for informal customers, and the successor to the Mac Professional (if it comes) can be greater than sufficient for “professional” clients. In that state of affairs, there is no such thing as a want for a separate iMac with “professional” branding. 

tech died in 2021, Google Loon, LG quits mobile business, HomePod dead, iMac Pro dead, Hike, periscope app, houseparty app Undertaking Loon was geared toward beaming the web to rural areas. (Picture credit score: Google)


Earlier this 12 months, Google’s mother or father agency Alphabet put the brakes on Loon, a high-profile enterprise geared toward beaming the web to individuals in distant areas of the world. A futuristic mission by Google that began a decade in the past needed to be shut down owing to excessive prices and an unsustainable enterprise mannequin. After self-driving Waymo, Loon was one of the crucial hyped initiatives to return out of Alphabet’s progressive “moonshot” manufacturing unit. The thought behind Loon was merely to convey mobile connectivity to these areas the place constructing a standard community was practically unimaginable. Loon, the Alphabet subsidiary, used big balloons to beam web however operating the operations proved too expensive even for an organization as cash-rich as Google. The software program powerhouse first began engaged on Loon in 2011 and launched the mission with a public check in 2013. Final 12 months, it began the primary business deployment of the tech in Africa in partnership with Telkom Kenya. 

The social video app Houseparty was introduced in 2016. (Picture credit score: Epic Video games)

Houseparty app

The Houseparty app is lifeless. The social video app that noticed an enormous uptick in the course of the pandemic was discontinued within the month of October. Houseparty, a video chat service, was launched in 2016 and was acquired by Epic Video games in 2019. In a weblog publish, Houseparty mentioned will probably be absorbed into Epic Video games to work on “creating new methods to have significant and genuine social interactions at metaverse scale throughout the Epic Video games household.” Final 12 months, the app was built-in into the sport expertise of Epic’s hit recreation “Fortnite”, enabling gamers to see and chat with each other over their smartphones whereas they’re enjoying. 

tech died in 2021, Google Loon, LG quits mobile business, HomePod dead, iMac Pro dead, Hike, periscope app, houseparty app Twitter-owned Periscope app went off the air in 2021. (Picture credit score: Periscope)

Periscope app 

Periscope, the live-streaming app owned by Twitter, went offline earlier this 12 months. It didn’t come as a shock to many when Twitter pulled the plug on the Periscope app, which many thought was already lifeless. Periscope was a sensation when it was launched, though with the arrival of TikTok and Instagram the app misplaced its allure. Twitter purchased the start-up behind Periscope in 2015 in a deal reportedly value as much as $100 million. The core options of the Periscope app are already built-in into Twitter within the type of Twitter Stay. Based on Twitter, the price of sustaining the app has turn out to be excessive whereas the platform continues to lose customers.  

Hike Messenger was India’s reply to Fb’s WhatsApp. (Picture credit score: Google Play Retailer)

Hike StickerChat 

Whereas many noticed it coming, the shutdown of the messaging app Hike was an enormous letdown at a sentiment stage. Hike was launched in 2012 by Kavin Bharti Mittal as India’s reply to Fb’s WhatsApp however the app struggled to beat its greatest rival within the communication and chat area. Issues weren’t unhealthy until 2015 when the service had practically 70 million customers. In reality, the startup was valued at $1.4 billion in 2016 however earlier this 12 months the messaging app went off the air with no actual clarification from the promoters. The shortage of a homegrown app that rivals WhatsApp is the place India lacks in opposition to China, which has efficiently managed to create a “tremendous app” within the type of WeChat with over a billion customers. The demise of Hike StickerChat means customers haven’t any choice to hold utilizing WhatsApp, which has an entire monopoly in India. 

tech died in 2021, Google Loon, LG quits mobile business, HomePod dead, iMac Pro dead, Hike, periscope app, houseparty app The Stadia recreation streaming service has been an enormous flop. (Picture credit score: Google)

Google Stadia video games growth workforce 

Google’s Stadia recreation streaming service is on steroids, though the probabilities of its success appear bleak now after the tech big introduced earlier this 12 months that it was shuttering its inside recreation studio. From the very starting, critics had doubts about Google’s cloud-based gaming service however nobody thought that the corporate would reduce its ambitions. The truth that Google received’t be creating its first-party video games for the marque gaming service is an indication that simply by having assets doesn’t assure success within the aggressive gaming market. It’s a mixture of creativity, entry to the very best expertise, and persistence apart from a transparent imaginative and prescient.


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