Here at TechArk we are ga-ga for gadgets, but for every successful, brilliant, and innovative technological advancement, there are piles of abandoned, neglected, failed attempts. The good thing about failure (especially when it’s someone else’s) is the opportunity to learn what NOT to do in the future. Let’s take a peek at some of the biggest tech flops of 2016.
Usually the reigning champ of all innovation and the lords of silliness, Google made a boo-boo last April. By adding an innocent GIF-button depicting a Minion dropping a microphone (to get the last word in any gmail chat, naturally) where the “Send” button ought to have been, Google inadvertently embarrassed Gmail users everywhere. Rather than sending your painstakingly hand-crafted email to your boss, you just sent a gif of a minion mic-drop, ostensibly ending your conversation and ensuring that you’ll never live this one down around the water cooler.
It just goes to show that practical joke fails can happen to the best of us. You’ll get ‘em next year, Googs.
The incredible resurgence of Pokemon can hardly be considered a fail, as summer of 2016 was overtaken by people driving out to remote locations, loitering in bushes, and bending down in the middle of crowded rooms, all in the pursuit of those tiny, digitally-fabricated creatures. The game was wildly popular, but that right there is part of the reason we’re calling it a flop. The Pokemon Go craze was so short-lived it could’ve left a few users with whiplash, but more important was the very real physical danger posed by the game. Players were so distracted by the enticement of catching more pokemon, they became frighteningly unaware of their surroundings.
The game still has a loyal following, but overall the frenzy incited by the game has faded, along with the danger of being run over by a distracted driver who was “just trying to catch a charmander.”
Galaxy Note to Self
Samsung’s Galaxy phone series has historically done very well, but the infamous Note7 deserves a place in the Technology Fail Hall of Shame. With the ever-increasing pressure to build a better battery - a smaller size, a longer lifespan - Samsung may have overlooked a few factors. The Note7 was undoubtedly the biggest tech fail for quite some time, as the phones began spontaneously exploding into flame, starting fires wherever they happened to be resting. Users suffered burns, property damage, and (probably) some psychological trauma. A recall was issued, replacements were manufactured and distributed...only to have the exact same issues.
The entire phone line was discontinued, and Samsung lost BILLIONS of dollars in revenue, not to mention the untold losses in terms of customer loyalty. It never pays to cave into societal pressure, and that’s a lesson Samsung is learning the hard way.
At TechArk, we recognize that nobody and no business is perfect. We continuously strive for learning, growth, and improvement. We bring you these flops not to laugh at the misfortune of others, nor to gloat that it hasn’t happened to us, but rather to examine the situations carefully with an eye to what went wrong, why, and how could it have been prevented.
Much like being the younger sibling, our status as a small, SWaM business in Virginia affords us the opportunity to learn from others’ mistakes - particularly when those “others” are giants in the technological world. We study and learn, adjusting our own systems and processes along the way, to bring our customers the very best we have to offer.