2016 not only brought about some of the biggest news trends, incredible #hashtags and controversial stories. Most importantly, this year also gave birth to some of the best innovations.
We have listed five innovations worthy of mention.
1. Solar Roof (developed by SolarCity and Tesla)
— SolarCity (@solarcity) November 14, 2016
We kicked this list off with an innovation developed by South African-born Elon Musk. Musk, who is the CEO of SpaceX and Tesla Motors and is the co-founder of SolarCity, needed a solution to not only save the environment but also save money for the ordinary person.
While the traditional solar panels are bulky in size and look, the solution to this dilemma was creating a series of panels which fits with each other while harnessing solar power.
The range will be available next year to the consumer market (pricing hasn’t been made available yet), this comes at a time where Americans are considering going solar.
2. Hyperadapt 1.0 sneakers (developed by Nike)
The future starts here.
— Nike (@Nike) December 1, 2016
Nike surely got inspired by Back to the Future with their latest sneaker design – the Hyperadapt. The perfect harmonious balance between technology and urban athleisure, the sneaker allows the wearer to have the laces tie by itself at a push of a button. This technology is more useful for persons with motor/physical disabilities.
3. Virtual Reality headset (developed by Sony for Playstation)
“The perfect introduction to your new virtual reality world.”
PS VR will come with a free demo disc, take a look: https://t.co/gFNQ60WADg
— Playstation VR (@SonyMorpheus) September 6, 2016
Probably the most significant innovation of the year, Sony made a way for tech companies to develop similar technology aimed at gamers.
While the VR technology may come at an expense like HTC’s Vive and the Oculus Rift, Sony has made VR affordable, not just for gamers but for the general consumers.
4. Pokémon GO (developed by Niantic, Inc.)
— Pokémon GO (@PokemonGoApp) July 7, 2016
The mobile game that dominated the year, blew its competitor into the water. No game has been influential, not only in design but also in technology.
This game got millions of people to get off the couch and get active in the great outdoors by catching pocket monsters (Pokémon as they are known).
With 500 million downloads and counting, Niantic are constantly working to bring something new and innovative, the realm of mobile gaming will forever be changed thanks to Niantic and Pokémon GO.
5. Kid Power Band (developed by UNICEF)
— UNICEF Kid Power (@unicefkidpower) May 23, 2016
One in four children doesn’t get enough food and exercise globally – a statistic that bears severe consequences.
The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and American design studio, Ammunition, have developed wearable technology, in the form of a band, which encourage children to active putting the power to save lives in their hands.
With the band, kids embark on missions learning about cultures which earn them points. These points get converted to funds which UNICEF use to deliver food parcels to malnourished children across the world.