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Anticipation for iPhone 5, in a post-Steve Jobs era, signaled the smartphone's record-breaking sales: More than 5 million were sold within three days of its Sept. 21 launch. That, an iPod touch reboot, and the iPad mini all helped cement Apple's most valuable status, and ratcheted the device to the No. 2 slot.(REUTERS/Tim Wimborne)

Year in Review 2012: Top 10 Searches

Chalk up another one for the voter: People may have been wearied by the negative campaigns, but they persevered through the slog of politics and made "elections" the year's most searched term. The fifth iteration of an Apple smartphone, a glorious gathering of athletes, the passing of a superstar, and a bevy of celebrities—including one duchess—also mesmerized online audiences in 2012.