Compiled by Patrick Avenell

SYDNEY, NSW: When it comes to online news, be it written for consumers or the trade, there is no doubt what the most popular stories are about: new digital technologies. Although achieved new readership records for its coverage of the retail section and the appliance industry, it was the newfangled digital goods that enthralled the most readers during 2010. Here are our Top Five Digital Stories of the Year.

The biggest story overall was the Australian release of the iPhone 4. Before the launch of this handset, which has sold through in huge numbers, Apple was inundated with complaints regarding a wonky antennae and an incorrect signal strength indicator. In its typically arrogant style, Apple originally told consumers to purchase an additional case for $30, before relenting and giving the case away for free at launch.

Convergent television technology was a hot topic in 2010, with all the major TV brands releasing IPTV offerings to transform the humble box into a more diversified entertainment station. Content providers were also riding this bandwagon, with Foxtel announcing a new On Demand streaming service. It wasn’t the service itself that interested readers, but how downloading large file sizes would affect users’ data plans.

For the TV guys themselves, 2010 was the year of 3D. It’s too early to tell how big an impact 3D is going to have on the category as a whole, but at the time of launch it was hailed as the best thing since the addition of colour. Samsung head of marketing Mark Leathan told that when retailers first saw Samsung’s offering they were “blown away by it” and any quality myths were immediately dispelled.

But before Samsung first to market with 3D TVs, Panasonic was the first to showcase their TV. In the comfortable surrounds of Pana’s local office in Belrose, selected journalists received a first look at the technology on plasma panels. It was only a prototype model, but Panasonic grabbed all the headlines that day by being the first to publically turn on a 3D TV in Australia.

Rounding out the Top Five is a brand new player to the Australian telco game: Amaysim. The invite to the gala launch of this new service promised big news, and it delivered, with the story of Amaysim’s entry into the Australian pre-paid mobile market grabbing stacks of views. Amaysim’s ads are all over buses and trains now, but the telco was at its most popular when nobody had even heard of them.

Top Five Digital Stories of the Year

1. Australian Apple fans to be disappointed by iPhone 4 this week (most read story of 2010)
2. Foxtel looking for more unmetered ISPs for new On Demand service
3. Retailers don’t think 3D TV is “dodgy” anymore, says Samsung
4. Timing is everything as Panasonic sets 3D TV benchmark
5. We think we’re Amaysim, just the way we are: new mobile phone telco

Click here to check out the Biggest Appliance Stories of the Year
Click here to check out the Biggest Retail Stories of the Year