2018 has been a brilliant year for technology. Whether you’re a gamer, movie lover, fan of music, or just happen to have a cell phone, there has been plenty for you to love. Join me as I run through the most innovative tech of 2018, before we dive into another 365 days of big announcements!
Best of 2018 – A Year of Gaming Greatness
Though 2018 wasn’t a console launch year, there was still a lot for video game fans to get hyped about. Those on the PC side witnessed the arrival of Nvidia’s RTX graphics cards which, despite a controversial launch, do boast impressive features that will ultimately become the new standard. AMD also had a great year in the CPU department, with the Ryzen 3 2200G and 2400G offering a solid option for budget gamers, while Intel, of course, had to keep it its “Fastest Gaming CPU” crown with the i9-9900K. After some seriously disappointing times in the PC building space, where cryptocurrency mining skyrocketed component prices during 2017, things have finally returned to a somewhat normal level.
As for console gamers, 2018 was a great year for exclusive titles. Both PS4 and Nintendo Switch had must-play games that no doubt drove system sales up through the roof over the holiday period. Xbox One players didn’t have as many new exclusives to get excited about, but Microsoft’s backwards compatibility continued to wipe the floor with the Sony and Nintendo counterparts.
I must also give a shout-out to the Nintendo Labo. While I personally think its launch price was too high, the deals seen during the holiday sales were a lot more sensible. I gave my little brother’s Labo a go, and I have to say, there are some truly addicting apps that make great use of the hardware (cardware?). The fishing minigame was my favorite.
Best of 2018 – We Finally Have 4K 60 FPS HDR Capture!
For the content creators amongst you who might have missed my review, the AVerMedia Live Gamer 4K blew me away with its 4K 60 FPS HDR compatibility. Powering all of my gameplay recording sessions, as well as my Twitch streams, the Live Gamer 4K has handled it all superbly. I’ve been waiting for a capture card that can do it all, and AVerMedia has been the first to achieve it. If you want to push your gameplay videos to the next level, especially if you’ve got a PS4 Pro and Xbox One X for HDR support, this capture solution deserves to be on your radar.
Best of 2018 – Ultimate Viewing Experience
TV and movie-viewing experiences are becoming increasingly more enjoyable thanks to the fantastic tech included in new TVs. OLEDs remain the best of the best, though are usually more expensive. LG’s C8 is the 2018 model that reigns supreme, though Samsung, Sony, Philips, and Panasonic all have their own flagships that are fighting hard for the top spot. When it comes to more budget-friendly 4K HDR options, TCL has once again got you covered. The company’s 6 series improves on what came before, but you can find some killer deals on the 5 series range that makes the purchase a no-brainer. If you want to go for a more recognizable brand, but still want to spend $350 or less, then Samsung’s NU6900 is a brilliant choice.
Best of 2018 – All I Hear Is Music, Glorious Music
Both Bose and Sony have been battling for the top spot in noise-canceling headphones, which are arguably the most interesting headphones out there for music lovers. The Sony WH-1000XM3 just about takes the lead for 2018, boasting the best noise-canceling features and overall great sound quality. Also of note are the Sennheiser Momentum 2.0 headphones, the design of which I love, and the Audio-Technica M50xBT, which introduces wirelessness to the pair of famed cans.
Best of 2018 -Year of the Notch
Cell phones have become our daily bit of kit that we’re forever pulling out of pockets. They are mini computers that can do almost anything. The year 2018 ended with a bang, with Apple releasing three new phones: the iPhone XS, XS Max, and XR. These are refinements on what the iPhone X brought to the table in 2017, including the polarizing notch. Fortunately for those who hate notches, Samsung delivered the Note 9, which acted as a return to form following the explosive Note 7 and the overly-cautious Note 8. Asus launched the ROG Phone which targets gamers with an awesome aesthetic and unique cooling. OnePlus delivered the 6T which, despite the increased price, is still considered “budget” when you look at the four-figure flagships from other companies. Finally, Huawei teased the US market with the Mate 20 Pro.
It’s been tough to round up 2018’s standout technological innovations, as there has been so many interesting evolutions and breakthroughs. Here’s hoping 2019 is just as difficult to filter through, as more companies attempt to push the envelope and set themselves apart from the competition.