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Whitney, Gangnam, and Sandy: what the world Googled in 2012

google zeitgeist

Google has published its annual Zeitgeist report, revealing the world's most popular people, events, and media of 2012. The biggest searches worldwide were for Whitney Houston, Gangnam Style, and Hurricane Sandy, but Google has also broken down the results by category and country.

'What is SOPA?'

The Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) was the United States' most popular "what is" search term of the year, beating out Scientology and "KONY," the name of a Ugandan guerrilla leader who was the subject of a viral video. Americans also wanted to know "how to love" more than anything else. The Hunger Games was the most searched movie of the year, both in the US and worldwide lists, with the latter still being dominated by English-language movies. Indian movie Ek Tha Tiger, placed seventh, was the only foreign-language entry. The world's most popular image search was for English-Irish boy band One Direction. In a list largely populated by celebrities like Selena Gomez, Megan Fox, and Rihanna, only the iPhone 5 and Minecraft break the monotony.

Apple and Samsung take first, second, third, fifth, and seventh place

In consumer electronics, the top positions are unsurprisingly dominated by Apple and Samsung, with iPad 3, Galaxy S3, and iPad mini taking the one, two, and three spots, and Galaxy Note 2 and iPad 4 also featuring. The rest of the top 10 was filled in by the Nexus 7, PlayStation, Surface, Kindle Fire, and Lumia 920.

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