I don't really agree with that sort of assessment. Sure, maybe there haven't been revolutionary leaps and bounds in technology, but there's still impressive iterative improvements. With that out of the way, here are some of my favorite gadgets and technology from 2013:
- Sony A7 - It's no secret that I'm a huge photography nerd. I think the Sony A7 represents one of the most impressive leaps in consumer / prosumer photography in a long time. An amazing full frame sensor crammed into a body that's not any bigger than a traditional mirrorless camera? Amazing! I haven't gotten my hand on one yet (and I know some reviewers have complained about slow autofocusing issues -- similar to what I experienced with the Sony RX1), but I love the idea of this and what it represents for the future of technology.
- Sonos Play 1 - The Sonos system isn't for everyone, but they continue to amaze me with their new products. We primarily listen to most of our music through Rdio (but sometimes listen to content from local computers) and it sounds fantastic. Ever since we first bought a Sonos speaker a few years ago, we've listened to music much more frequently -- dare I say that if we're not watching television or sleeping, the Sonos is probably playing music in our house (it's probably why my Last.FM profile says I've scrobbled close to 165K songs... www.last.fm/user/RockBandit). The Play 1 makes their system even more accessible -- it's cheaper, smaller, and still sounds amazing.
- Harmony Ultimate - Full disclosure: I've been previously employed by Logitech, so my opinion on this remote is probably a bit biased. With that out of the way, the Harmony Ultimate has been a blessing in managing our home entertainment center. It's much easier to setup than the Harmony One (I complained about it extensively in the gdgt days: www.engadget.com/question/the-harmony-one-is-such-...). The included hub and IR dongles make it easy enough to hide our gear in a cabinet and makes our friends and family think we know magic.
- Intel's Haswell CPU's - While CPU products and architecture aren't something we usually talk about in the Engadget forums, it still represents an impressive technological step forward for consumer technology. Since Intel announced the new architecture earlier this summer, we've seen a number of notebook suppliers implement the new chips and it's awesome. Ridiculously crazy battery life, better performance, and even a bit of an improvement to onboard graphical capabilities (you won't be playing BF4 at max settings, but still...). Because of this, our laptops are smaller, lighter, and last longer. What's not to love??!