This year has been a whirlwind, but what great stories did the mobile world get to see?

This year has been one of the most manic that anyone of us has no doubt experienced, and we’re pretty sure that we’ll won’t see news headlines quite as crazy ever again.

Of course, newspapers, radio, TV, and social media have been swarmed with COVID-19 stories, but the world of politics, entertainment, celebrities, and tech has seen some corkers for stories.

We saw the fall of Donald Trump as he was knocked off his throne by Joe Biden. Little Mix lost one of their members, Jesy Nelson, which has been a tough pill to swallow for all the Mixers around the world.

And, of course, the build up to Christmas was almost ruined, as I’m a Celeb looked to be a write off; luckily, Ant and Dec saved the day and brought us bush tucker trials in a very wet and windy Wales.

We’ll soon be waving goodbye to 2020 and bringing in the New Year. And we speak for everyone when we say – thank goodness!

But before we kiss goodbye to 2020 (forever), we thought it’d be fun to take a look back at how the mobile world has fared this year. We’ve seen everything from cool new devices and revolutionary tech, to ultimately weird and wonderful news stories that couldn’t help but pique our interest.

Here are our top 10 favourite mobile moments of 2020.

1) We all stayed connected - 30th March 2020.

March was the month that COVID-19 sent us into lockdown. We were suddenly cut off from seeing those we see daily – loved ones, friends, and family. It was extremely difficult and unfamiliar, but what we love the most is that we all found a way to stay connected.

In March, the time spent talking on mobiles rose by almost 50%, Ofcom reported. The average time talking on the phone went from 3 minutes 40 seconds to almost 5 and a half minutes! It’s nice to know that even though you couldn’t be with the ones you loved, you could be there for them over the phone.

2) Apple brought the pocket-rocket iPhone SE back from the dead - 15th April 2020.

Apple have amazed us this year in more ways than just one, but they kicked things off with the incredible, pocket-rocket iPhone SE (an updated revival of the original iPhone SE that launched in 2016).

A photo of three iPhone SE's together.
iPhone SE rose from the dead!

We don’t use the term pocket-rocket lightly, we use it because this smaller 4.7-inch iPhone packs the same wow-factor processor as the iPhone 11 Pro. It’s one of Apple’s more budget-friendly iPhones, but the smaller price tag certainly doesn’t mean a compromise in its quality.

It boasts the best single-lens camera ever seen on an iPhone as well as a compact but top-notch display, and a practical design – certainly, something to scream and shout about!

3) Mobile phone apps helped with final goodbye - 9th May 2020.

COVID-19 has made things difficult for families all around the world. It’s made it impossible to see family and friends; but one thing that’s been noticeably devastating is the fact that we can’t see many of our loved ones who may be in hospital.

One person who felt this pain was one of the BBC producers who unfortunately wasn’t able to be with his mother during her final days. He instead video-called her on his mobile where she said goodbye to him, his brother, and her grandchildren. He was able to sooth her and talk to her as she fell asleep for the last time.

4) O2 didn’t forget their customers - 25th June.

Refunds can be a gruelling process and we’ve all experienced the pain of hearing ‘Have you got your receipt?’ or ‘It’s been longer than 28 days, sorry.’ It can be a long battle between the customer is always right and strict T&Cs.

O2 made headlines this year for choosing to scrap the 28 day rule, to put it lightly. It was brought to light that the mobile network had sent some of its former customers refunds, up to 15 years after their contracts ended.

It turns out, O2 noticed a billing issue which resulted in some of their customers being charged twice on their final bill before leaving the network. They therefore sent cheques to cover this cost, plus 4% interest!

Some of the recipients thought they were the target of a cyber-fraud scam, which, given the time-frame in question, is completely understandable. As it turned out, O2 simply don’t forget about their customers!

5) Emojipedia got more inclusive - 24th September 2020.

We’re all guilty of using an emoji - or 5 - when we’re messaging. They can say what we’re thinking in ways that words simply can’t. This year, Emojipedia broke the news that a whopping 217 brand-new emoji have been approved for 2021.

Six of the new kissing emoji from Emojipedia.
Emojipedia is set to get more inclusive next year.

These new additions will be much more inclusive, featuring a wider range of skin tones and well as gender inclusive emoji. The new update will feature facial hair options for a non-gender specific person, a man, and a woman – they got this one so right!

6) A lost-at-sea phone was reunited with its owner - 29th September 2020.

You may have been unlucky enough to have lost your phone at some point, for it never to be seen again. For many of us losing the phone isn’t what gets us the most, it’s the loss of the photos and memories that are on it.

A paddleboarder fell lucky this year as he lost his Samsung Galaxy at sea in July and thought he’d never see it again. Fast-forward to September, a lady paddling in Norfolk found it and uploaded the photos on the phone to Facebook.

Around 20 minutes later, the paddleboarder came forward to say he lost it back in July. Amazingly the phone was still working, and the owner didn’t lose any of his precious memories!

7) Apple’s new chip raised the bar - 12th October 2020.

This year saw the release of the incredible iPhone 12, but it’s Apple’s new chip that made news. The A14 Bionic blows other chips out the water and is the first ever to be built on a 5-nanometre process.

It’s what gives iPhone 12 the juice it needs to be as fast and efficient as it is. It’s every gamer’s, streamer’s, and nosey Facebook browser’s dream. Featuring a 16-core Neural Engine, this chip gives iPhone users an 80% increase in performance. This is not just news, it’s front-page news!

8) iPhone 12 made the jump to 5G - 13th October 2020.

We all waited an entire year for Apple to drop the G bomb -that’s 5G- and they finally did it with iPhone 12. We aren’t just welcoming any old 5G, we’re saying hello to the fastest ever 5G.

A photo of iPhone 12 in all five available colours.
Apple made the jump to 5G this year. 

iPhone 12 delivers an advanced experience on a global scale giving users access to faster downloads, high-quality streaming, and more responsive gaming. Now, we know Apple don’t do things by half, but this 5G tech is revolutionary!

9) Huawei overcame seriously tough challenges – 22nd October 2020

A US trade ban meant Huawei had their usual supply mobile chips cut off. This threw a huge obstacle in their path when creating new handsets – or so we thought.

This year, Huawei made news after launching their Huawei Mate 40 series It appears that they’re working around the clock to overcome this chip freeze problem, but they haven’t let it stop them from releasing the Mate 40. There are three new models, all which are newsworthy themselves. Huawei delivered the Mate 40, the Mate 40 Pro, and the Mate 40 Pro+. Each one boasts a stunning display, pro-grade camera tech and a flawless design – hats off to Huawei!

10) Mobile networks were banned from selling locked phones - 27th October 2020.

Ofcom made everyone’s year after announcing that they were banning mobile operators from selling locked mobile phones as of December 2021. We will finally be able to kiss goodbye to the frustration that comes with a phone that’s locked to one network.

A photo of a girl holding a phone.
Ofcom's new rules will make it easier to get a great mobile phone deal. 

This ban will save people time, money and effort and will help them unlock better offers further down the line if they should wish. We can say goodbye to pesky unlock codes and say hello to great mobile deals in 2021!

2020 – that’s a wrap.

This year has thrown some curveballs our way and it’s certainly not been an easy one. But the mobile world has seen some incredible headlines. From iPhone 12’s advanced 5G technology to a missing mobile reunited with its owner two months later!

The New Year is drawing closer and if you’re looking for a swanky new phone to take into it with you, then you’re in the right place. Our Massive January Deals are now up front grabs, and if 2020 wasn’t your year, why not kick off the next in the best way?