The Top 5 Apple News Headlines Of 2012

Which news stories about Apple would grace your list of the top headlines of 2012? Let me back up a year. Easily, the top story of 2011 was the death of Steve Jobs, which made trivial every other headline. The year before, the top story was Apple’s introduction and launch of the iPad.

What about this year? While it may not have been as eventful as the previous two years, here are my Top 5 Apple News Headlines of 2012.

#1 – Samsung Loses Patent Trial: Or, put another way, Samsung has to pay Apple over a billion dollars because the company is now an accused and convicted thief.

#2 – iPhone 5: Few products ever garner the headlines the way a new iPhone takes center stage, and the latest version was no different. Smaller, lighter, faster, larger, and 4G LTE– all at the same time.

Tech pundits took delight in bashing Apple for not releasing an iPhone to match their lala land dream list, but customers couldn’t wait for the latest and greatest.

#3 – Apple Mapsgate: All of the good in iPhone 5 and iOS 6 was rather quickly overshadowed by a less-than-stellar new Maps app. Google Maps was ousted and Apple decided to go their own way. It wasn’t pretty.

For most iOS users, Apple Maps works fine. It’s cleaner and easier to use than Google Maps, faster, has better caching, better turn-by-turn directions, but is missing a few very useful features (no transit data).

Apple Maps was so bad that Apple didn’t even try to defend it (ala Steve Jobs and Antennagate with iPhone 4), and issued a public apology.

#4 – Goodbye, Mr. Forstall: Maybe Mapsgate was just the last nail in the coffin of iOS head, Scott Forstall, but new CEO Tim Cook prefers collaboration, and Forstall, despite his years of experience with the company and Steve Jobs understudy, couldn’t make the transition, and was shown the door.

Also dismissed was the new head of Apple’s growing retail operation, John Browlett, who once oversaw big box retailers in the U.K. but didn’t fit into Apple’s retail culture, and, he, too was shown the door.

#5 – iPad mini: It’s apparent that the tens of millions of iPad mini customers didn’t read what the tech pundits said when comparing Apple’s diminutive wonder with Amazon’s Kindle Fire HD or Google’s Nexus 7 tablets.

The Mac mini sports a non-Retina display, and last year’s processor, but customers didn’t blink an eye. It’s the mini that will be the revolutionary leader of the iPad line by this time next year.

Honorable Mentions: Plenty of Apple headlines made the news, including the new ultra-thin screen iMac, a more powerful Mac mini, another year without an upgrade to the Mac Pro, a completely new line of iPods, as well as Apple’s announcement to manufacture a Mac in the U.S. in 2013.

Another top story that deserves a mention is the drop in Apple’s stock price, though that one is a no-brainer. Many stockholders have made good profits on AAPL both this year and in years past, so it makes sense that they would take a profit now before the U.S. government drives off the fiscal cliff and raises taxes on the wealthy.

That’s my list of Top Apple Headlines for 2012. What’s on your list? Or, what did I miss?