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The Tech That Died in 2011

January 3, 2012

This is a really interesting list of tech that died in 2011 – the Flip camera, Google Buzz and the like. A couple of entries caught my eye:

Guitar Hero
Santa Monica, Calif. — For Guitar Hero, Feb. 9, 2011, was the day the music died. The videogame franchise was killed when Activision announced during its fourth-quarter earnings call that it was shuttering the business unit dedicated to Guitar Hero.

The popular game was born in 2005 to Red Octane and Harmonix, and was distributed by Activision. Later iterations of Guitar Hero, which were developed by Neversoft, had band-specific titles and also incorporated more instrumental props, so fans could play drums or sing as well as play guitar.

But Guitar Hero sales fell off, and the game was eventually overshadowed by its record-breaking Activision siblings, the Call of Duty and World of Warcraft series. Revenues of Guitar Hero fell from $1.7 billion in 2008 to about $300 million in 2010.

Guitar Hero will be remembered for its love of music, with Aerosmith, Metallica and Van Halen among its favorite artists, and for creating living-room rock arenas for millions of users.

Guitar Hero is survived by Rock Band, Rocksmith, Rock Revolution and likely many other console and mobile games starting with “Rock” that we’re not aware of or haven’t been invented yet.

I was surprised by this as Guitar Hero was a game that should have done well in the connected age where the download systems of PSN and BOX Live allowed the download of new tracks (I know I purchased quite a few). It was also touted at the ‘Billion Dollar Franchise’. However the game-play didn’t change as much as it should and I know I stopped riffing on my plastic guitar some time ago. Ah well. What the article does not mention as the successor is the Tap Tap Revenge games – basically this same idea on a smart phone.

The other things that caught my eye are how much the list is driven by mobile – the Flip went because we all have great cameras in our smart phones. The tablets that died in competition with Google/Apple, the technology that could not keep pace with the mobile world etc..

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