With CES (Consumer Electronics Show) opening today, here is a list of 17 gadget hits and flops over the years.

Hits include VCRs (1970), Camcorders and CDs (1980) and HDTV (1998). Flops include Mini Disks (1993), Motorola Zoom (2011) and Windows Vista (2007).
VCR (1970): Hit! The Consumer Electronics Show traces its route back to 1967 but it didn’t really hit the map until 1970, when Phillips unveiled its Video Cassette Recorder. VCRs had been around at exorbitant prices but this one was released at $900.
Laserdisc player (1974): Flop Even though the Laserdisc looks like modern technology, it never came close to surpassing the videocassette, and it was made obsolete by the DVD.
Camcorder (1981): Hit! Sony’s Betacam was the first to put the recording device inside the camera itself. That made recording video a one-person job. Soon, Sony was making camcorders for consumers. That became the go-to video recording device for decades, until the smartphone surpassed it.
CD (1981): Hit! CDs killed records and cassette tapes, and for years were the dominant way people bought music.
MiniDisc (1993): Flop MiniDiscs were less than half the size of CDs and were rewritable. But CD-RW debuted in 1997, making CD-burning possible, and the record industry never embraced MiniDiscs.
DVD (1996): Hit! Despite Netflix, iTunes on-demand and other digital video innovations, DVDs remain the No. 1 way people watch movies. The DVD quickly put VHS out to pasture, and Blu-ray still hasn’t overtaken it.
Apple Pippin (1996): Flop A year before Steve Jobs came back to save the company, Apple unveiled Pippin — a Mac that could also be used to play games. The Pippin’s 14.4 kpbs modem was painfully slow, and few games were available for the Mac operating system.
HDTV (1998): Hit! The first high-definition TV sets sold for tens of thousands of dollars, but prices quickly fell enough to jolt the TV market. HDTVs are now the dominant TV format in the United States, replacing most outdated tube TVs.
DVR (1999): Hit! The first DVR was developed as a partnership between Dish Network and Microsoft. The Dishplayer was a huge hit with satellite TV customers, and it soon spawned the Tivo
Xbox (2001): Hit! It took a decade, but the Xbox eventually became the world’s No. 1 video game system. It has since fallen back to No. 2, but the Xbox One is running neck and neck with the PlayStation 4.
Windows Media Center (2002): Flop Though Windows Media Center debuted in 2002, Microsoft’s Media Center update in 2005 was the company’s most embarrassing failure. More than a decade later, Microsoft is still trying and failing, recently giving up on Xbox as an entertainment hub for the average consumer.
Blu-ray (2003): Hit! Sony’s Blu-ray format offers improved picture and sound quality over DVD and it still hasn’t overtaken the DVD, but it has been popular enough to be considered a hit.
Windows Vista (2007): Flop Vista was plagued by bugs, software incompatibilities, sluggishness and annoying security alerts. The episode nearly destroyed Microsoft’s reputation with consumers.
Palm Pre (2009): Flop Palm debuted its Pre smart phone in January 2009, but it failed to gain any serious traction. Despite praise for the Pre’s WebOS operating system, Google’s Android phones quickly overshadowed Palm as the iPhone alternative of choice.
3-D TV (2009): Flop 3-D TV is a neat gimmick, but no one wants to wear dorky-looking glasses while watching TV, and there are hardly any TV stations that broadcast in 3-D.
Motorola Xoom (2011): Flop The first tablet for Google’s “Honeycomb” version of the Android operating system was a disastrous flop. Xoom sales were dreadful, and Motorola quickly canned the project.
Nokia Lumia 900 (2012): Flop The Lumia 900 was gorgeous, came with a great camera, and it offered the first truly different design for a smartphone in years. But it ran Microsoft’s Windows Phone, which few consumers wanted.
source: cnn.com

briservWith CES (Consumer Electronics Show) opening today, here is a list of 17 gadget hits and flops over the years.