Best Of 2012: Technology

As 2012 quickly comes to an end, we're looking back at what stood out across various industries this year. Today, Camilla, one our Youth Advisory Board members, discusses some of the biggest achievements in the tech space.

Best Of 2012: Technolgoy

This year, we’ve been met by some incredible novel pieces of technology, and stellar improvements on already-existent technology. Incidentally, we’ve also been advertised (often successfully) a fair number of less-than-impressive techie goodies, but we won’t talk about that today. For me, at any rate, the best of this year’s technology spans two separate realms of possibility: the maybe-if-I-save-up variety, and the completely unpurchaseable but nonetheless faint-worthy innovations. In these categories, I’ve picked out a couple highlights.

So, without further ado:

Your world: Roku Streaming Stick

RokuDoesn’t ring a bell? That’s because this is the present you want, but didn’t even know how much you wanted it (but, now you know, you’re going to pretend you’ve always wanted one). Basically, it looks like a USB stick you plug into your TV. Unlike a USB stick though, this tiny object provides you with extensive access to online streaming episodes on Netflix and likeminded sites — and it’s (relatively) affordable. “Stream to your heart’s content,” their website proclaims.3D printing

Out of this world: 3D printing.

Obviously, this is not a viable Christmas present, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t an ‘I always WISHED this existed’ sort of dream. It’s exactly what it sounds like: you print in three dimension. It's of incredible use to architects, and apparently also in constructing dental crowns. For those of you who don’t build buildings or teeth, the options seem limitless now but after a week of printing origami-like designs, I’m not sure this gift…

 
 

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Millennial News Feed

Quote of the Day: “Google Maps is my GPS and I would be lost without it.” –Female, 22, DE

Young consumers have come of age in the era of social media, are not afraid to say what they think of brands online, and expect a response. Brands should be listening to the feedback, and Topshop proved that they are this week when they announced they would stop displaying mannequins being criticized for looking too skinny. The whole story started with a Facebook post from one shopper, which went viral and pressured the retailer to take action. (Digiday)

Vine has gotten brands’ attention primarily for being a hit with teen users, but in the few years the app has been around, it has evolved from the “Instagram of video“ into a piece of the entertainment industry. The app has made small changes that optimize it for the creators who are broadcasting out to huge audiences, and the users who prefer to watch, not post. (But did the platform make the top ten list of Millennial and teens’ favorite apps?) (Fast Company)

It seems that every week another brand comes out with a campaign to capitalize on the selfie trend, but KFC’s new selfie bucket may be the most entertaining yet. The brand has launched a campaign in Canada featuring the “Memories Bucket,” which takes selfies for diners, then prints them out—and yes, it also holds chicken. Sadly, the bucket was only created for the commercial, but KFC says they are “currently looking to work with some franchise owners to facilitate surprise and delight deliveries of the Memories Buckets to some of our more passionate fans." (Adweek)

Boomer and Xer bosses probably all want to know what motivates Millennial workers—but they might be surprised by some of the answers. A recent study found that working on challenging projects actually ranks higher than top salary for Millennials: 37% said that challenging work is their prime motivation, compared to 18% who said money, and 17% who said “coworkers that I enjoy.” (Forbes)

3-D printing has been called the future of many industries, but could it also be the future of fashion? A 3-D clothing line created by a 27-year-old student is making headlines, and showing that 3D printed style is possible. The collection took over 2,000 hours to print, but the creator, Danit Peleg, believes that the technology could “help democratize fashion and give designers more independence in the creation process.” (Mashable)

Quote of the Day: “I love the Amazon app because I can look up products that I want to buy and store them very easily. I also can scan barcodes while I'm in the store to check for the best price and if I want it, I can click one button to purchase it online instead of paying more for it in a store.” – Female, 29, FL

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