The Biggest Innovations of 2020

December 11th, 2020

Technology is a difficult yet beautiful thing. Though it has become increasingly difficult to disconnect from our phones and computers, we can’t forget the good. There are plenty of inventors using and creating technology that makes our world a little brighter, more connected, and accessible for everyone.

Each year, Time rounds up the most interesting and groundbreaking inventions from that year. The editors drew from nominations from other editors, correspondents, and inventors themselves. And though it might not seem like we made much progress in our personal lives thanks to the coronavirus pandemic, it doesn’t mean that science was also put on hold. 

For example, did you know that a steadier power wheelchair was invented this year? How about an adaptive gaming kit? It might not seem like a huge deal, but this is a major step in making video games more accessible to play for people who face mobility challenges that prevent them from holding a standard controller. Virtual reality headsets aren’t just a gaming thing anymore, either. Augmented reality is now helping surgeons and frontline workers do their jobs even better.

In the education sector, companies like Duolingo, known for its user-friendly language learning app, is now helping kids learn how to read with a phonics app. There are also inventions like Van Robotics ABii, a high-tech robot tutor, and Outlier.org, which is making higher education more affordable.

And, as we focus more and more on sustainable products and practices, it’s impossible not to give a nod to companies implementing things like solar power and recyclable toothpaste tubes. Of course, there are too many inventions to highlight here, like all of the new gaming consoles and other entertainment innovations and services that helped us throughout the year. 

You can check out the full list of the best 2020 inventions on Time’s website.

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