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Our favorite—and slightest favorite—tech of 2017

2017 is almost over. For many of us, there are reasons to be sentimental and there are reasons to be blissful we can just pierce on. That’s how we feel about tech from this year, too. We’ve polled any member of the Ars Technica reviews group about their favorite and slightest favorite tech products of 2017. Each staffer has done their own selections and combined their own explanations.

We’re holding a extended clarification of tech product here. It’s not all about gadgets—a preference can be software, a service, or even a feature. Note that every one of these choices is a personal selection. In the reviews, we aim to yield adequate context and pattern information to give readers a very clever clarity of the pros and cons of any product so they can make their own, sensitive decisions about what tech works for them and what doesn’t—because everybody has opposite priorities and needs. We do share the personal opinions, since that’s partial of reviewing a product, but we try to do that in a way that helps strength out that context.

Here, we’re just pity the personal picks. Sometimes there’s a disproportion between the best tech product of 2017 and your favorite.

These are the favorites—well, half of them are, anyway. The other half are products that we don’t caring for. Below, you’ll find the selections from staff listed in alphabetical sequence by last name.

1

Here’s to a 2018 loaded with new favorites.

Ron Amadeo

Favorite: OnePlus 5T

The OnePlus 5T. Check out those slim bezels.

The Google Pixel XL 2 is the best Android phone you can buy, but I’m a fool for good, inexpensive devices, so I’ll have to collect the OnePlus 5T as my favorite product of the year. OnePlus has customarily offering high-end specs with a low price, but with the tradeoff of a antiquated design. This year OnePlus went all out in the pattern department, producing a slick, slim-bezel device that looks just as good as these $800-$1000 phones, but at a $500 cost tag. The aluminum physique and a near-stock build of Android is mostly an upgrade over a Samsung or LG flagship. Sure, there are some tradeoffs. You won’t get the day-one updates of the Google Pixel or the top-tier camera, but all OnePlus ships is “good enough” for the bill unwavering consumer.

I really wish some-more companies would take a pitch at making a good phone that isn’t at flagship prices. It feels like many companies only try for their ultra-expensive phones and then possibly just don’t recover anything cheaper than that or recover phones that are clearly subpar junk. we skip strategies like Motorola when it was a Google company, and you had 3 good phones—the Moto E, the Moto G, and the Moto X—all along the pricing spectrum.

Least favorite: Samsung Bixby

My slightest favorite product of the year is substantially Samsung’s new voice assistant, Bixby. We’re used to Samsung shoveling piles of half-baked program out the doorway with every smartphone release, and certain enough, Bixby is a slow, frequency operative “me too” product, with no redeemable qualities. Bixby is some-more irritating than the common terrible pack-in program since it elevates Samsung crapware to the hardware level. There’s a hardware Bixby symbol on both the Samsung Galaxy S8 and Note 8, and while routinely you can omit program you don’t like, there’s no ignoring that hardware button.

After a recoil from customers, Samsung finally relented and allowed users to invalidate the Bixby button. A passed symbol on the side of the phone is frequency ideal though, and Samsung ought to strictly support remapping the button. Third-party remapping solutions are available, but they are janky hacks that mostly break.

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