In a world where technological advances turn up everyday in news-feeds and broadcasts, the annual T3 Gadget Awards is a microcosm of all of these advances in one place. Like the Oscars for Technology, the T3 Gadget Awards nominate the most cutting-edge gadgets out today. With past releases like the iPad 2, Microsoft’s Kinect and huge advances in gaming, it’s worth a quick note to show many of the most important revelations which have taken place in 2011. Over 960,000 votes, along with the final tabulations of a 6 person expert panel, decided the winners. Here are just a few of the more interesting revelations, as well as some interesting--if not ironic--choices for winners.
One of the most interesting aspects of the Awards are the categories themselves. They run the gamut of technology, and aren’t completely focused on gadgetry. For instance, there’s the Best Retailer award and even the Gadget Personality of the Year award. It is in this category that one can find an ironic choice: Mark Zuckerberg. Although his influence on modern communication can’t be ignored, few would debate that he’s got Clooney-like charisma. And then there’s the category of Best Commuting Device in which anything that helps you get from here to there can be included. So, the electric bicycle nominee might seem like an obvious choice. The winner, in fact, was the Amazon Kindle -- which makes “getting there” easier, as long as you’re not riding the electric bicycle while reading it!
One of the most interesting awards, Digital Media Service of the Year, was a small surprise, seeing that Mark Zuckerberg walked off with the Personality of the Year. Instead, it was Twitter that beat out Facebook and Google for this influential award. Surely the CEOs of giants like Apple, Google and Facebook aren’t crying themselves to sleep over their T3 Award losses. However, they should definitely take note that Twitter’s win speaks volumes with regards to where social media is headed. Facebook must continue to innovate and not upset their community, or they may well end up lost and forgotten like MySpace.
One of the most surprising winners to the average observer might be seen in the Phone of the Year. While most would think that the iPhone 4 would run away with the award, the Samsung Galaxy S II actually impressed the voters more. Likewise, the Brand of the Year surprised a few as Google took top honors. Surpassing giants like Apple and Facebook, Google’s place as the top brand can’t be taken for granted. Again, it is just the T3 Gadget Awards, but the reality that those in-the-know are voting makes it an important win for Google.
Ultimately, The 2011 T3 Gadget Awards offer an interesting insight into how much and how fast technology is evolving. If you were to go back to the first awards given in 2008, some of the heavy hitters of the time are no longer viable, while some upstarts were just getting their feet on the ground and are huge players today. Although these awards are offered annually, with the speed that many of these products are created, they may want to make it a semi-annual event.