Best Tech Innovations 2012

Courtesy Bang & Olufsen

A look at some of the year’s buzziest gadgets.

visitors of January’s Consumer Electronics Show, in Las Vegas, believed the
goal of the convention was to convince people to buy something from a brand
other than Apple, they can be forgiven. However, attendees quickly
realized that not all of this year’s great tech innovations are destined to
originate from Cupertino, California.

Television makers, in particular, are introducing new
technologies aimed at offering a better picture and easier ways to connect to
the Internet for video streaming and use of other web applications. The most
promising of these is LG’s new Organic Light Emitting Diode (OLED) TV, which
produces gorgeous color and will soon be available in a 55-inch size. And as
WiFi video streaming becomes more pervasive, TVs are becoming more portable.
Sharp, for example, is introducing Freestyle TVs that can be easily moved from
room to room; there’s even a handle.

Other products center around programming. For instance,
Sony is extending its popular PlayStation games beyond the console for use on
other devices. And to continue a trend seen last year, there is now a raft of
Android-based tablets competing against the iPad. Nokia, meanwhile, aims to
challenge the iPhone with its Windows-based Lumia 900 model.

The ease with which tablets connect to the Internet is
being passed along to a myriad of other devices. Canon’s new cameras and
camcorders use an iPhone application to upload photos and videos to
social-networking sites—and you don’t have to use a computer to do it. Internet
connections are becoming a standard feature in cars as well: Cadillac, Audi,
Ford, Mercedes-Benz, Kia and more are offering access to Internet-based
applications like Facebook and Pandora.

Could this could be the year that proves that Apple
isn’t the only big shot in the tech arena?