Many are ready to close the door behind them on 2016 and leap into a new year. Before we do, the Goos3D team have taken a look at the year that was 2016. Please do play this in the background as you read:
What were your tech highlights for 2016?
Martin: People are finally embracing video. I’m surprised Facetime didn’t break down barriers to people video calling. I guess the problem was not everyone has an iPhone. Almost everyone does have WhatsApp though.
Then you combine everyone having faster internet, more mobile data and better phones. The perfect conditions for people to adopt video communications. To top it all off, Facebook is empowering everyone to run their own live new channel with Facebook Live.
Jon: The VR movement – from Oculus (terrible) to Sony PSVR (rather good). It seems everybody is getting in on this race to perfect the VR experience. It’s just a matter of now hitting the three C’s: cost, comfort and content. But we’re getting there with no shortage in selection. The current VR leaders are PlayStation, Oculus, Google Daydream and HTC Vive. I’m just waiting for Nintendo to bring out a Wii VR.
Dean: To be fair, apart from the mobile front which has unfortunately been very calm this year there have been some huge innovations over the last twelve months. For me though it has to be the growth of the Dreambox or Android Box whatever you fancy calling it. Costing roughly €80 and with a good quality internet connection, the world can be your oyster. Every channel you could ask for, any event or game and best of all no more bills to TV companies. Now if only I could get a decent internet connection.
Gary: There have been many tech highlights this year as there have been celebrity deaths. But for me, 2016 is the year that wearable tech finally made sense for everyone. There have been so many great wearable devices released this year. The Samsung Gear S3 Frontier and Asus ZenWatch 3 topped the list as this year’s wearable “must haves”. Expect to see this trend continue in 2017. We expect the likes of Jawbone, Samsung and FitBit to release new fitness trackers.
Biggest tech flop of 2016?
Martin: I guess this is a no brainer. Samsung’s Note7 had the potential to be the greatest smartphone of all time. We were at the launch and to be frank the Note7 left us wowed. Like you know how the Great Gatsby wowed people. Now it practically doesn’t exist and blew some stuff up. The only other thing I could imagine putting here is the fact we’ve lost Pebble from the market. Up there with the celebrities we’ve lost is the first wearable I ever owned.
Jon: Pokemon GO.
Martin: Oh my god, yes. Pokémon GO was last year. I actually forgot about it.
Jon: Exactly. The fad of the year and could have potentially been something great. I was so excited about this. Gaming on the go what a great premise right? First, the screwed up the mapping system. Then they switched off third party maps. But worst of all, they never developed past the repetitive catching of Pokemon. Nor did they add the ability to battle or trade with friends. Two of the most important concepts from the classic Pokémon old games. Simply couldn’t keep up with the hype machine
Gary: Ok, bear with me here. Note7 was an about catastrophe for Samsung. But for the biggest let down of 2016, I have to go with the iPhone 7. There was a lack of innovation with hardware and design. Like who needs two different shades of black? They also took away our headphone jack. Utter madness. Hopefully, next year will be different, as it’s the 10th anniversary of the first iPhone. Just don’t be too disappointed again.
Dean: I think the lads have the phone side of things pretty much covered. Nothing new or shiny worth getting this year apart from maybe the OnePlus 3, but there have been far too many flops for my liking. Apple, as Gary said, had a stinker. the Apple Watch is an utter disaster. The hype machine as ever with Apple was massive with adverts taking over but the big thing none of them mentioned was what does the watch actually do? Well, the answer was pretty much nothing if I’m honest. The sales were actually so poor Motorola actually put off their releases until they believed the market was more prepared. Note to the lads, the world wants wearables just not shite ones.
What are your tech predictions for 2017?
Martin: I’m sticking with video. It’s grown a lot in 2016, but it’s going to improve even more in 2017. Again, it’s going to be down to the likes of Facebook Live and WhatsApp video calling.
Jon: Artificial intelligence is where I think things are ready to grow soon. AI is catching up with the hype after years of Siri and general disappointment. AI is showing its awesome potential in Google Translate and more in Amazon’s Echo. Echo is amazing, and now that’s got healthy competition from Google Home. Artificial intelligence is now being used in everything from driverless cars and medical innovation. Keep an eye on AI it’s coming in big.
Dean: 3D printing went a bit quiet lately in terms of new releases. I’m banking on a huge jump in 3D printed technology in the next year or so. The medical industry has taken this rapid prototyping tech to heart literally. Although 3D printing might not be shown in the next level of surgical devices it’s influence and adaptability cannot be undermined. Also as the tech develops home systems are going to reduce in price exponentially meaning the modern era version of a man in his shed inventing can come to pasture. They say great innovation happens in times of desperation sure with Trump at the helm over the pond lets wait and see what happens.
Gary: It’s already started to click this year, I’m expecting massive leaps forward for VR in 2017. The likes of FreeFly VR have made it accessible to the masses. You can add Sony pushing VR gaming into the PlayStation world and Google Daydream to that as well. I can’t wait for VR developers get their hands dirty with some imaginative ideas over the next 12 months.
What app did you use most in 2016?
Martin: My apps revolve around the car. TomTom Go and Nexar are on every time I drive anywhere. Of course, WhatsApp is up there too, but that’s a given.
Jon: I know it’s not an official iOS or Google Play Store app but I would have to run with Showbox. Stuck on the bus to work in the morning quick episode of SouthPark. Long break or journey catch a movie, fairly simple and effective. Officially speaking, it’s Snapchat. The filters, Bitmoji’s etc. this app takes the top spot for me, especially at toilet time.
Martin: Note to self – block Jon on Snapchat.
Gary: Unlike Jon, I’ve been using official means to watch my TV and movies, so I have to say SkyGo. Being able to have Sky TV, Sky Movies and Sky Sports, both live and on demand, anywhere and anytime. It just makes life that little bit easier. There’s something about watching Cersei Lannister blowing up the Citadel while waiting in line at the motor tax office that makes me love SkyGo.
Dean: Is PornHub out of the question? No, seriously I’m a man who likes my sports so a SkySportsNews is a huge one. That and SkyBet. They have to be worked as a pair though because online betting does give better odds fair but this can mean you make a stupid decision. The ability to check the latest news, injuries and gossip from the sports world is of paramount importance if like me you fancy yourself as the next Jp Mc Manus. Up 500 beans this year – just saying.
Is there one piece of tech you can’t wait to get your hands on in 2017?
Martin: The Nello is probably the one gadget I can’t wait to get my hands on. It’s a cool, disruptive little gadget that provides key-less entry for people in apartments.
Jon: All going well I am due to give a Tesla Model S a test drive at the end of January. That’s something that I am well and truly looking forward too. A smart, eco-friendly car that looks like an Aston Martin, this will be fun.
Dean: Honestly I have wanted a smartwatch for a long time. But I haven’t been able to believe there would be a return on investment. Google recently announced that they are going to release, not one but two, flagship smartwatches in the next year off the back of the success generated by the beauty that is the Pixel. Interestingly, they have announced they will be partnering with someone who has made smartwatches in the past much like the HTC partnership on the Pixel, but they wouldn’t say who. I would love if HTC got on board but more than likely we will see a Google-LG/Huawei partnership here. Either way, I want.
Gary: 2017 is going to be massive for mobile phones. After the Note7 debacle, I’m genuinely excited to see what Samsung bring to the table next year. They now have zero option but to really push the limits on innovation. They can only hope this revives some customer loyalty and trust. Expect Apple to do something big with iPhone for its 10th anniversary. Google will no doubt have another iteration of the superb Pixel device. Also expect big things from Huawei and other Chinese manufacturers like OnePlus and Xiaomi.
What was your entertainment highlight of 2016?
Martin: Deadpool. Holy dickballs. What a movie. From a Marvel franchise I knew nothing about to being arguably the best Marvel movie of all time. Ryan Reynolds redeems himself from being a terrible Deadpool and a terrible Green Lantern. Good job Ryan.
Jon: Personally I like my gaming. The biggest source of entertainment I had this year was the latest release of the Uncharted Series. Solid game, beautiful detail and gameplay
Dean: Star Wars Rogue One is immense. Really before now I never ever even thought about how or who stole the plans to the Death Star. Lots of “oh yeaaaaah” moments of realisation throughout. Fair enough the beginning is a bit weak as are some of the characters but it really is more of a war movie from the franchise and the final act makes it all worth while. Also, just enough Vader to link with the movies of the past. I could go off on a rant but I’ll hold my tongue as Gary doesn’t really feel the same.
Gary: Game Of Thrones, without a doubt. Everything is now coming together in Westeros, and the latest series exceeded all expectations. It had everything. A magnificent script, revenge, back stories, dragons, more dragons, and two of the best scenes on TV in recent memory (battle of the bastards, and the citadel explosion). I cannot wait for April for the next instalment.
Entertainment flop of 2016?
Martin: Independence Day: Resurgence was shocking. I had the original on VHS. I watched it so many times. I even remember watching the Movie Magic episode on how they blew up the White House. I nearly turned off the sequel. Maybe if Will Smith wasn’t off wasting his time elsewhere, he could have saved the show.
Jon: Suicide Squad, a movie not about Will Smith that became totally about him. Oh and Harley Quinn, the walking talking sex puppet. Her character is far more interesting than what was actually conveyed. The less said about this utter shit show the better.
Dean: Well yes the Suicide Squad was complete and utter tripe. It just looks like DC really screwed up two titles which were harder to make a balls of but they somehow managed to do it. The Superman Vs Batman movie was the biggest let down. Literally everything even remotely good about this movie was shown in the trailers and don’t get me started on that Stepbrother style scene, jesus christ almighty. Blocklayers must have shed tears watching this movie. All it did was destroy walls. Throw Wonder Woman and an attempt of throwing everyone in the Justice league on the screen as fast as possible it just felt like DC wanted to create a Marvel style Universe in just one flick. It took Marvel ten years and a tonne of movies to do the same. Cop on.
Gary: At the risk of being excommunicated, Rogue One was…
Martin: an excellent movie. Can we move on?
Gary: No. Rogue One was a massive disappointment for me. I expected a lot from this movie, given that it was linking back to A New Hope. For me, it completely failed to deliver on the hype. No opening credits, poor characters and a severe lack of Vader presence made me feeling let down by Disney. Even a semi-solid third act in the movie couldn’t mask the blandness of Rogue One. Save your money, wait till it’s on SkyGo.
What was your most memorable series binge of 2016?
Martin: It was so very nearly Ice Pilots, but Suits passed it out at the death. I’ve been thinking about watching it for years, but now I’m stuck into it. I’m totally into the characters and the storyline. I just can’t stop watching episode after episode – it’s addictive. Now, to find a free online law school – or not. What’s the bar?
Jon: Oh dear, Westworld was my big one in recent memory. Two sittings of ten, hour long episodes was a pretty intense commitment, but it was worth every single second. Wow seriously if people haven’t watched it there is a new year’s resolution to get stuck into.
Dean: Luke Cage who just ripped up Harlem in ten episodes. A real salt of the earth hero and a release that was just so perfectly timed with the Black Lives Matter movement in the States. For the political power alone and the fresh take on the superhero genre, it had to be Luke Cage for me.
Gary: Finally, Jon and I agree. Westworld was great viewing, and something completely fresh. But my biggest binge this year was House of Cards. After a dull season 3, House of Cards returned to its former glory. There’s nothing better than watching Kevin Spacey play the expert puppet master over a cold weekend in January. Expect not to see or hear from me for about 3 days when season 5 is released.
What movie are you most looking forward to in 2017?
Martin: Knowing Jon is here, I’ll leave Beauty and the Beast to him. For me the likes of Guardians of the Galaxy sequel is top of the list. The movie itself is fantastic, but the first soundtrack got me through weeks of work.
Jon: This was tough for me. Anyone who knows me would tell you straight out, I am a self professed Disney fanatic. In normal circumstances means the live action version of The Beauty and the Beast wins hands down.
Martin: Whoa. I’m sensing a “but” Jon?
Jon: But unfortunately, Emma Watson annoys me. Her casting as Belle bothers me greatly. She doesn’t fit the bill but whatever. This year I can’t wait to see Logan, the final instalment of the Wolverine series. While the storyline just keeps Hugh Jackman in a job the trailer looks amazing. There seems to be something different about this superhero movie.
Dean: Pitch Perfect 3 oh that singing, the dancing it moves my soul. BAH sure thing, nope Im shocked it hasn’t been mentioned yet – the new Power Rangers Movie? The trailers look really impressive and tell me a man who didn’t pretend to be a Power Ranger in his youth and I will show you a lier, I just hope it doesn’t flop.
Gary: I’m finding it hard to choose, there are so many great movies due out. Lego Batman, Justice League, Transformers, Guardians 2. All movies I will watch in a premier seat in Odeon. But being a Marvel fan, I can’t wait to see how Spiderman Homecoming works out.
Martin: I’m so confused by the amount of Spidermen we’ve seen.
Gary: Yes, and the Spiderman franchise has flopped twice. This is either strike three or 3rd time lucky for Marvel with one of their staple characters. The trailer looks good, so I’m trusting that Marvel have got this one right. Finally.
Happy New Year from the Goos3D team
From everyone here at Goos3D, thanks for your support over the past year. We’ve grown in so many ways throughout 2016. More people are reading what we write and we’re writing and reviewing even more. We can’t wait for 2017 to kick off!