Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Bold tech predictions that came true in 2013

I was six for 10 in my 2013 predictions.
My best prediction was the forced retirement of Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer. I also predicted that Best Buy founder Richard Schulze would not buy back his company as he had pledged.
I also was right with some of my less daring predictions: Facebook’s sales rise, along with user disenchantment; Apple releases greatly revamped Apple TV set-top, but no television; Redbox Instant by Verizon flops; and Nintendo Wii U flops.
Some of my misses were doozies: Katie Perry did not win an Oscar for the song “Wide Awake.” She didn’t even get nominated. Whoops.
Also, I had predicted that no one would buy Tumblr, but Yahoo picked up the blogging platform. Plus, I said Twitter would get acquired, but the microblogging service went public instead.

Other prognosticators who hit the bull’s eye

So how did other fortune tellers do last year? (Note: I’m only looking at bold predictions here, not widely believed rumors or obvious trends.)
Silicon Valley entrepreneur Mark Rogowsky accurately predicted that Microsoft would buy Nokia’s handset business.
Informa Telecoms & Media was correct in predicting that Netflix would have a breakout hit original TV series. It arguably had three: “House of Cards,” “Orange Is the New Black” and the return of “Arrested Development.”
Rocco Pendola, The Street’s director of social media, accurately predicted that Zynga CEO Mark Pincus would step down. In July, Don Mattrick, former president of Microsoft’s interactive entertainment business, was tapped to replace Pincus as CEO.
BTIG analyst Richard Greenfield was correct in predicting that Apple would launch a streaming music service to compete with Pandora and Spotify. He was wrong on the name though. He called it iRadio, but Apple named it iTunes Radio.

Photo: Netflix original series “House of Cards” proved a breakout hit in 2013.

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