solar impulse plane

What Happened in 2010?

2010 was a pretty big year, all told. The start of a bold new decade – one full of technological advances and political drama. Did we even come up with an official nickname for this decade? The teens? Regardless, it all began in 2010 – before the words “Brexit” and “COVID” dominated the headlines.

Whether or not you were around to appreciate this particular year, we’ve lined up some of the most memorable moments of 2010 to help clue you in on what went down.

In this year

fun facts about the Burj Khalifa


The decade got off to a suitably huge start as the tallest human-built structure at the time of writing – Dubai’s Burj Khalifa – was opened to the public. The building is a staggering 829.8 meters tall, roughly 2,772 feet.

facts about earthquakes


One of the largest earthquakes ever recorded in known history hit Chile on February 27th, 2010. The natural disaster is said to have killed at least 525 people – it arose because of a devastating tsunami, and measured an earth-shattering 8.8 in magnitude!

facts about Barack Obama


US President Barack Obama officially announced the debut of the Affordable Care Act in the US on March 23rd, 2010. The program became known as “Obamacare” and was met with opposition despite its intentions to make healthcare in America more affordable and accessible to all.

Apple Logo


Apple changed the game as far as mobile technology was concerned back on April 3rd, 2010 – it was the day the iPad launched. The product effectively made touchscreen tablets a mainstream gadget – and it’s had many, many different iterations and new versions pop up since.

Interesting facts about Greece


Greece, continuing to struggle with debt, received a lifeline from the International Money Fund and the Eurozone on May 2nd, 2010. The country received a generous bailout package that amounted to €110 billion – with a few austerity measures thrown in to ensure the deal would go ahead.

Julia Gillard


Australia’s Labor Party saw a change of leadership triggered on June 24th, 2010 – and Julia Gillard, who took over from the resigning Kevin Rudd, made history as the country’s first-ever female Prime Minister. She would remain in charge until June 2013, when she resigned and was succeeded by… Kevin Rudd!

solar impulse plane


Flight history was changed forever on July 8th 2010, as it was revealed that the first-ever sustained flight – for 24 hours, in fact – had been completed by the Solar Impulse, an entirely solar-powered plane. We’re yet to see all our aircraft go fully solar – but the technology works, at least!



The WHO, or World Health Organization, officially declared an end to the H1N1 flu pandemic, known colloquially as swine flu. The influenza strain reportedly claimed the lives of more than 284,000 people worldwide, with more than 1.4 billion infected. 772 million people contracted COVID-19, by comparison, with three million lives lost.

interesting facts about USA


As of September 20th, 2010, the National Bureau of Economic Research claimed that the US officially left recession in June 2009 – with it being reported that America managed to regain 70% of its GDP from levels pre-recession.



Social media gained a new player in the shape of Instagram, first launched in early October 2010, after several months of testing. The platform would eventually be purchased by Facebook (later Meta), and it remains one of the most popular social apps in the West at the time of writing.

Facts about CERN


Researchers at CERN made a human first on November 17th, 2010, as they were able to trap antimatter for the first time in history. The unit’s Large Hadron Collider has been responsible for a few incredible moments in science over the past few years!

Barack Obama in front of the US Flag, talking to the room


On December 22nd, 2010, US President Barack Obama officially signed into law a full repeal of the US military’s Don’t Ask Don’t Tell policy – which banned homosexual people from serving openly. The policy dated back 17 years at the time of the repeal.

2010 was the year of the…

year of the tiger


People born in the years 1926, 1938, 1950, 1962, 1974, 1986, 1998, 2022, and 2010 certainly earned their stripes. They're regarded as tigers according to the Chinese Zodiac. To be a tiger means you're a warm-hearted person that's brave and adventurous. You're active, if not a little too energetic at times – and there's very little that stands in your way. The next tiger year is set to take place in 2034.

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This page was last modified on January 8, 2024. Suggest an edit

Celebrity Births in 2010

Georgette Falcone (Born February 11th, parents Melissa McCarthy and Ben Falcone)

Tykhon Cherniaev, chess player (Born March 1st)

Emanuella Samuel, YouTube star (Born July 22nd)

Ryan Kaji, “Ryan’s World” star (Born October 6th)

Gavin Thomas, Instagram star (Born October 29th)

Famous People we Lost in 2010

Tony Curtis, American actor, died aged 85

Alexander McQueen, British fashion designer, died aged 40

JD Salinger, American author, died aged 91

Sir Norman Wisdom, British comic actor, died aged 95

Dennis Hopper, American actor, died aged 74

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