Ian Hardy’s favourite things of 2019


2019 was another growth year for technology as we saw the foldable smartphone actually come to life. From a Canadian perspective, the carriers unleashed “unlimited” data, but as expected, this move came with fine print.

The CRTC and the Privacy Commissioner were busy in 2019 with a slew of privacy breaches, the wireless review, Digital Charter and conversations regarding MVNOs.

Below is the list of my favourite things from a busy 2019:

Lyft

Lyft is not new in Canada, nor is Uber, but in 2019 I took a new approach to ride-sharing and jumped into the front seat to understand what it’s like to be a driver. We report on the industry, and I thought it was important to experience what drivers go through on a daily and monthly basis.

In my testing for one month, there were positive benefits for the passenger — namely, that the service is on-demand and cost-effective. From a driver’s perspective, it’s incredibly easy to sign up, but driving is time-consuming. The major benefit is that you generate near-immediate revenue, which gets deposited directly into your bank account. However, the toll on the vehicle and inconsistency of knowing when people might need a lift is frustrating, even with the company giving you data on potential peak drive times.

Overall, this on-demand industry is still in a very early stage, and we’ll continue to see more competition across the board. This will also lead to saturation from companies offering ride-sharing and also see prices drop and perks being offered to customers.

Tim Hortonstim hortons lid

Year after year, Tim Hortons’ app is my habit. I love the convenience of ordering ahead, and the introduction of the rewards has been saving me money every week.

The only issue I have, apart from the entire food menu, is the new lids. I wrote an article about this horror on InsideTimmies and also started a petition to bring back the new lids.

Now, Canadian-born pop star Justin Bieber is feeling the same way.

Ontario Cannabis StoreOCS

Well, what a joy it is to order weed from your phone legally. The OCS site itself is powered by Ottawa-based Shopify and offers smooth transactions. I usually use THC, but this time I ordered a CBD vape and was satisfied with the results.

I didn’t order again, but the experience and using the product was vastly different compared to when I was 16 and hiding it. Now, after doing research, I order edible gummies through another service. This is not yet legal but always promises a good time.

Successionsuccession

Succession is, hands down, the best show I watched in 2019. It’s on Crave and I won’t spoil it.

Disney+Free Solo

Disney’s streaming platform, Disney+, was a late addition to 2019 but is now a staple in my life. I legit forgot how huge Disney was as a company until it put all its content together in one platform.

While it’s easy to single out Star Wars series The Mandalorian, Marvel, and Pixar flicks, it was National Geographic that captured my attention with the quirky and eccentric Jeff Goldblum in The World According to Jeff Goldblum, and the doc about rock climber Alex Honnold who climbed El Capitan in Free Solo.





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