What I Want For Christmas From Each Major Tech Company Next Year

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Here’s my wish list. I realize it’s too late for this year, but I’m hoping the companies are already planning for next year, and this way they have all of 2014 to deliver. Many of these are pretty big asks, I admit, but the companies in question have pretty deep pockets and access to world-class resources. So how about let’s all deliver.

1. Microsoft

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Skype torn down and rebuilt from the ground up. Skype is terrible on every platform, and yet I’m cursed to use it every day. It delivers in VoIP pretty reliably, but not as reliably as you might imagine given its origins. Also, it’s terrible at text-based chat communication, and key features like group chat are locked behind a paywall, even though I already pay the company a bunch annually for Skype Out, Voicemail and Skype In numbers.

2. Nintendo

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Put Mario (and others) on iOS and Android. I’m really hoping that the Wii U was a secret plot to tank the stock and force management to reconsider licensing properties for other mobile platforms, because if so, stroke of genius. Let’s have Mario, Pokemon, Donkey Kong, etc., on iOS and Android, and we’ll give you lots of money in exchange.

3. Google

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Kill Glass and focus on making Android better on phones and tablets. Google Glass doesn’t make any sense to me, and continues to make less the more I learn about it. I’m sure this will be greeted with ample fanboy froth and fury, but honestly, any resources Google has devoted to this project would be better used to help make Android on smartphones and tablets less something you check interminably and more a seamless part of your everyday life. Glass’ goals are fine, in other words, but focus on the platform people will actually use.

4. Amazon

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Nail that grocery formula on a global scale. I love the idea of Amazon Fresh, I just hate the painstakingly gradual rollout. I also understand there are a lot of moving pieces and it’s going to take time to get things right, but selfishly, I want the same company I count on for most of the rest of my shopping to solve the remaining inconvenience of grocery shopping, too.

5. Facebook

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Stop trying to be Yahoo mixed with Twitter. It’s crazy to even consider, but I actually miss the endless stream of baby pictures and pointless posts lamenting some minor mundane inconvenience a friend from high school had during the day. Facebook wants to be a source for news and real-time info, but that’s not what I want it to be. I’m at the age where I’d actually appreciate the quaint sentimentality of an old friend posting their kid’s first crayon drawing, and ironically FB’s trying to mature past that.

6. Twitter

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Keep evolving Direct Messages. DMs want to be more than they are, and Twitter has finally started recognizing that and is building on it. I want more of that, and I think this is one gift on my list that I’ll actually get in 2014. Here’s hoping I don’t regret asking in the first place.

7. Apple

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A MacBook Air with Retina Display. Apple, you’ve been working towards this for so long, but you keep the Retina Air just out of reach, just on the horizon. The MacBook Air now has tremendous battery life, and is near perfect in a 13-inch version, but the screen on the 13- and 15-inch Retina MacBook Pro just blows it out of the water. The Retina MacBook Air is the Holy Grail of personal computing, so let’s make that happen.

Those are my wishes: Some are selfish, some are realistic, some are definitely not going to happen; all are what I’d genuinely like to see coming from the major players in the tech space in 2014. Oh and maybe some socks, most of mine are looking pretty threadbare.

Feature image courtesy gagilas on Flickr.