Reflections on 2016: Stephen Stokols, FreedomPop

This holiday season, we are again sharing the reflections on 2016 from Southern California's technology ecosystem. Today's contribution is from Stephen Stokols, founder and CEO of FreedomPop (, which offers up free, mobile Internet service. You can see all of our holiday reflections here.

What's was biggest news from you or your‏ firm this year?

Stephen Stokols: FreedomPop raised additional $50 million to expand the business internationally and accelerate US growth.

What's the biggest lesson you learned this year?

p> What's your favorite technology gadget, device, or innovation you ran across this year?

Stephen Stokols: Tesla's self driving and self parking. It's incredible.

Finally, what do you think will have the biggest impact on the technology industry in 2017?

Stephen Stokols: Virtual reality will shape content in 2017, games and mobility.

Stephen Stokols is the founder and CEO of FreedomPop, which provides disruptive mobile services so that no one is left off the "connected grid." Founded in 2012, FreedomPop is rewriting the rules of the global telecoms industry and offers a suite of devices, services, and innovative social sharing and incentive benefits, providing consumers access to free high-speed Internet and mobile phone services worldwide. Stephen was formerly an executive with British Telecom.