It’s the time of year to take stock of the past 12 months. It’s been a big year in tech, with plenty of business news. But what changes hit the industry this year? Here are five of the top tech trends of 2012:
Smaller tablets: Consumers made it clear that they want a balance portability and functionality. And while smartphones grew to 5 inches or more, the smaller, 7-inch models got their moments in the sun.
Smaller tablets are particularly good for reading and Web browsing, two of the most common tablet uses. They also tend to be much cheaper than larger tablets, opening up the tablet trend to many more consumers. Apple’s new iPad mini was the clincher on the small tablet movement, even coming after Google introduced its Nexus 7.
Bigger tablets also proliferated this year -- Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Google all introduced iPad-sized 9- and 10-inch tablets, setting up a two-front tablet war with the market leader, Apple.