2011 in tech – October

The tech world mourned the loss of Apple founder Steve Jobs, even as the company he created confounded expectations once again with the iPhone 4S

The death of Apple's transformative CEO Steve Jobs in October, aged 56, left a cloud over the tech world. Although the news was not particularly surprising – he had been battling cancer for several years and had stepped down as Apple's CEO in August – Jobs' death deprived the tech world of one of its true visionaries.

Jobs' death came just a day after Apple launched its latest product, the iPhone 4S. In a typically Jobsian move, the iPhone 4S confounded the expectations of observers (including this very site) who'd been expecting a radically redesigned iPhone 5.  Instead, it was an evolutionary step rather than a revolutionary one – upgrading the iPhone 4's innards to a dual-core A5 processor and the camera to an 8MP monster.

The big addition to Apple's arsenal was the arrival of "Virtual Assistant" Siri on the iPhone 4S, who came packing natural voice recognition and a snappy line in smart comebacks.

Elsewhere, Apple's rivals geared up for the next round of the smartphone wars, with the launch of the first Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich handset, the Galaxy Nexus. Motorola delved into its back catalogue, reviving the RAZR name as an Android handset.

Finally, BlackBerry had a torrid time of it in October, with the BBM service suffering a lengthy outage that forced BlackBerry into a grovelling apology and offers of compensation.

 

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