Ah 2017, the year many will look back and say, "well, that was interesting." Now is the time the masses' favorite websites are rolling out their year in review pieces (CIO Dive included).
Each year Google graces the internet with trending searches from the last 12 months. Some are sobering, with searches for hurricanes and celebrity scandals.
Others, however, highlight the tricks needed for daily life, such as "how to lose belly fat fast," the #10 most searched "how to," and generic recipes for "chicken" or "ground beef."
But Google searches also show how tech has become a bastion of daily life, from cryptocurrency many consider "funny money" (one of the authors) to the hottest new tech tool … or filter.
Below are some highlights from global Google searches:
How To, #3: "How to buy bitcoin" and Global News, #2: "Bitcoin"
At the time this was written, one bitcoin is equal to $17,824.97. One bitcoin was equal to $0.06 in 2010 and $2,592 in July 2017; a $100 dollar investment in bitcoin then would be $28,341,266 and $656, respectively, according to Fortune. So for those people looking to buy bitcoin now, you may be a little late to the game.
But bitcoin doesn't have anything to do for the enterprise, right?
Actually, it does. The ledger technology the cryptocurrency is based on, blockchain, is steadily gaining traction and finding new use cases across industries, including supply chain management and cybersecurity. But Thanksgiving turkeys and, possibly, Canadian marijuana are also finding use for the technology.
Many companies that have long refrained from the bitcoin market are also starting to get their toes wet as the value continues to rise to unprecedented levels.
If you are going to buy some bitcoin, just make sure you don't accidently get rid the hard drive or your password and pin numbers. Those moves cost two men $80 million and $30,000, respectively.
How To, #7: "How to freeze your credit"
Consumers don't often discuss cyberattacks with technical detail. Rather than knowing the ins and outs of a data breach, consumers are more focused on the impact. Such is the case with the Equifax breach, where many wanted to know if they were of the 145.5 million U.S. consumers impacted.
Centralized in the U.S., with some searches in Canada, "how to freeze your credit" searches spiked the week of September 10 with increased trailing through the end of October.
But interest in credit freezes didn't just center on one bureau. Instead, Google documented searches related to the leading credit firms and "how to freeze your credit report at each credit bureau."
The fallout from the Equifax has been well documented, even taking home CIO Dive's award for "Technology Failure of the Year." But while siloed in the business technology communities, it is important, and sobering, to remember that technology failures and cyberattacks impact far more than a businesses' reputation.
Instead, consumers could experience a harsh negative impact and take years to recover.
Memes, #10: "Hot Dog Meme"
No one knows us quite like our search history. CIO Dive's most recent searches included Timberland hiking boots, Connecticut's senators, Patagonia fleece and if you can compost tofu.
While Google's 2017 trends list did not feature any of our searches, they did cover the "world's first augmented reality (AR) superstar," or Snapchat's dancing hot dog.
The hot dog debuted in July and became an instant internet sensation. Ultimately, however, Snapchat upped the ante on all AR advancements.
The social media platform launched its Lens Studio AR tool for Mac and Window desktops, so users can place three-dimensional objects or characters into their own images, according to a company announcement on Thursday.
The app is free and encourages either consumer or professional creators to make image overlays with a modest version of the same AR tech Snapchat's own team uses. However, deploying AR tools was too much for a social media company to take on.
By enlisting outside AR platforms, sharing the AR market became possible, despite it all beginning with a mere hot dog that dances.
Spending on AR is forecast to reach $215 billion by 2021, a stark contrast to 2017's modest $11.4 billion. AR is already well established in the consumer market, but companies across industries are tapping into the tech to better manual duties.
The allure of AR is met with requirements to maintain it. Adding AR to the technical infrastructure requires additional training, IT support, reworking software and adding additional layers of security and encryption.
It's unlikely a company will benefit from a dancing hot dog, but the little guy may have indirectly benefited the entire AR market.