Technology sector has been the cynosure of all eyes, both for bad and good reasons, in the first quarter of 2018.
The sector received a lot of flak over a number of issues including Facebook’s data fiasco, Apple’s iPhone-battery slowdown and President Trump’s tariff imposition on Chinese imports. The hallowed FAANG stocks (Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Netflix, and Alphabet) were the worst sufferers.
However, increasing demand for cutting-edge technology such as Artificial Intelligence (AI), Augmented/Virtual (AR/VR) reality devices, autonomous cars, advanced driver assisted systems (ADAS) as well as Internet of Things (IoT) related software and hardware continues to boost the growth potential of the technology sector.
Facebook Data Fiasco: Biggest Controversy
Facebook’s data misuse scandal captured the attention of government regulators instantaneously, worldwide. The incident negatively impacted not only the social media stocks but also the overall technology sector.
The social media giant was already facing backlash over the Russian meddling into the 2016 U.S. presidential elections. The Cambridge Analytica incident has now put the company’s data practices under severe scrutiny.
Apple, Expedia, Uber, NVIDIA: All Suffered
Apple also received a lot of criticism after it revealed that software updates slowed down iPhones with older batteries.
Moreover, incidents such as the Russian hacking of computers at the 2018 Olympics as well as the security breach at Expedia division Orbitz highlighted the security loopholes currently faced by technology providers.
Further, ride-hailing service provider Uber stopped all test drives, after a driverless car crashed in Arizona, killing a pedestrian. The incident also compelled GPU provider NVIDIA to suspend all tests.
Moreover, Trump’s criticism about the company’s business practices severely hurt Amazon during the last few days of the quarter.
Additionally, European Commission’s (EC) decision to impose “digital tax” on tech companies such as Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Netflix and Alphabet has been the cause of major concern among investors.