This Day On The Street
Continue to site right-arrow
ADVERTISEMENT
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
TheStreet Open House

10 Best Tricks, Worst Treats In 2012 Tech

Stocks in this article: AAPL AMZN FB GOOG SNE ZNGA

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Halloween trick-or-treating is always a mixed bag (or pillowcase). Sometimes you luck out and get a whole candy bar; other times you get the house giving out pennies and raisins.

It works kind of the same way in the tech world. Some years the kindly folks in the big Silicon Valley mansions give consumers treats so incredible that they talk about them for seasons on end. Sometime they open their big, old-growth doors and dole out stuff so cheap or pointless that it makes you want to come back with eggs, toilet paper and flaming bags of something awfully unpleasant.

Leading up to this Halloween, tech consumers and investors have received a little of each extreme from tech companies. With those mixed results starting to show up in those companies' earnings, maybe it's about time to sort through the bag and figure out with products were the sweetest in 2012 and which were potentially toxic to consumers and companies alike:

Treat
Google's (GOOG) Nexus 7 Tablet

Legal wrangling between this tablet's manufacturer, Samsung, and Apple (AAPL - Get Report) held up this device's release, but the wait was well worth it for Android fans and Apple detractors.

The Nexus 7, at 7 inches, is smaller than the recently announced iPad Mini. At $200, it's also much less expensive than its $330 competitor. Its HD display is great for games and movies, its Tegra 3 processor is built for speed and its mere presence is an affront to Apple and its followers.

Think that's an overstatement? We weren't the ones who took time out of the iPad Mini launch presentation to bring the Nexus 7 onstage and tear it down like a would-be sorority sister during pledge week. We don't remember the Motorola (MMI) Xoom or BlackBerry (RIMM) Playbook getting that kind of rough treatment from Apple, or even acknowledgement. You mad, Tim?

Treat
Amazon's (AMZN - Get Report) Kindle Fire HD

It hasn't been a great quarter for Amazon. The company took its first loss in nine years, it's not optimistic about next quarter and it has analysts grumbling.

It did manage to score one big win in the past three months, though. Despite Apple's assertion that 7-inch tablets aren't a good idea -- a claim not at all rooted in Apple's decision to make one 0.9 inches bigger -- Amazon's Kindle Fire HD not only got the first Consumer Reports recommendation for a 7-inch tablet but scored its first thumbs-up for a tablet costing $200 or less. Considering that figure gets you an iPod Touch in Apple world, that's a victory Amazon and consumers should feel good crowing about.

1 of 4

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

Jim Cramer's protégé, David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
Try it NOW
Try it NOW
Try it NOW

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Dividend Stock Advisor

Jim Cramer's protégé, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Options Profits

Our options trading pros provide over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • Actionable options commentary and news
  • Real-time trading community
Try it NOW
Try it NOW
Try it NOW
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!

Markets

DOW 17,678.70 +6.10 0.03%
S&P 500 2,057.09 +5.27 0.26%
NASDAQ 4,771.7630 +13.8840 0.29%

Partners Compare Online Brokers

Free Reports

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs