Around this time each year, the editors at PCWorld and TechHive gather to recognize the best new tech products—the hardware, software, gadgets, and devices that had the biggest impact on the world. The process starts out casually enough, because editors get to name their favorites from their respective beats, and everything is included in the first pass.
But passions rise when the time comes to winnow what inevitably becomes a very long list to just 100 new products. There’s a fervent back and forth as the editors make their cases as to why their product should remain on the list—and someone else’s should be whacked. Staff alliances form and dissolve as editors strategize how they’ll win the day for their picks.
A list with 100 computers, smartphones, printers, cloud services, and other great products inexorably emerges over the course of a few weeks. But that’s only half the battle, because the editors must now decide the order of importance that each product holds. That came together surprisingly quickly this year—at least for the top 10 products. As for the other 90; well, let’s just say the list was settled only after great deliberation.
And here, without further ado, are our picks for the 100 best products of 2012:
1. Windows 8 Professional (operating system)