Many of the biggest stories in the connected consumer space occurred mostly offstage in 2012. Apple conducted behind-the-scenes discussions about rolling out new media services in 2013 and beyond. Google spent much of 2012 in difficult negotiations, primarily with policymakers and antitrust authorities in the U.S. and Europe. Microsoft released Windows 8 and its first home-brewed tablet, the Surface RT. Overall, 2012 saw important groundwork laid for potentially significant advances in the connected consumer space. The year 2013 should be eventful.