Stephen LawsonSenior U.S. Correspondent, IDG News Service

Stephen Lawson covers mobile, storage, and networking technologies for the IDG News Service, and is based in San Francisco.

Thread Q&A

ZigBee and Thread act to make their IoT smarts stack up

Two pieces in the complicated puzzle of smart-home options will snap together later this year when the ZigBee Alliance starts certifying devices that use the Thread protocol for networking.

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What you need to know about home IoT standards at CES

Don't get too excited about all your devices getting along—yet.

5G PPP panel group shot

What we learned about 5G in 2015

The much-anticipated 5G mobile standard won't be finished until 2020, but the people who'll make it happen were busy throughout 2015 trying to define it.

SolidFire deal gives NetApp the season's hottest gifts: flash and cloud

NetApp wants to be at the intersection of two hot trends in a rapidly changing storage industry with its planned US$870 million acquisition of startup SolidFire.

NetApp to buy flash storage startup SolidFire for $870M

NetApp is acquiring startup SolidFire for US$870 million cash for a foothold in the fast-growing market for scale-out flash storage.

Three cellphones

Battle over LTE in Wi-Fi bands may soon be resolved

The fight over LTE networks using the same frequencies as Wi-Fi may be headed toward a peaceful resolution at last.

St. Louis Cardinals flyover

Future LTE networks could set up shop in your office

This week, Intel, Ericsson and Nokia joined Qualcomm in forming the MulteFire Alliance, an industry group to develop and promote LTE that runs only on the kind of unlicensed frequencies that companies use for Wi-Fi.

Security

Cyberattack prediction: Hackers will target a US election next year

A major cyberattack next year will target a U.S. election, security expert Bruce Schneier predicts.

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IoT startup Afero goes end to end for security

Internet of Things startup Afero says it can secure small and large IoT devices with a Bluetooth radio module and a cloud service.

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Dell maneuvers toward EMC takeover with no rivals in sight

It looks like the Dell-EMC wedding is on: EMC says it hasn't gotten any better proposals, and Dell reportedly is trying to shed Perot Systems to trim down for those photos.

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Anonymous says it took down Trump Tower website

The online activist group Anonymous said it took down the Trump Tower website on Friday after it warned presidential candidate Donald Trump about his statements on banning Muslims from entering the U.S.

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The latest IoT network builds on a power-grid foundation

New networks being built with far less fanfare than mobile carriers' cell coverage will connect objects that in some cases have never been linked before, like street lights and traffic cameras. The latest, called Starfish, is now debuting in Silicon Valley.

20151005 Cisco headquarters sign

Cisco's Spark grows into a phone and meeting platform for the cloud

Cisco Systems is reinventing its collaboration tools from the bottom up, turning the lowly Spark text-messaging app into a cloud-based platform that includes videoconferencing and the core features of an enterprise phone system.

Home IoT products at Connections

This chipset may prevent a network cacophony in your smart home

Choosing smart-home products might get easier a year from now thanks to a Broadcom chipset that will be able to work with several competing network systems.

Freescale Kinetsis microcontroller

The merged NXP and Freescale will make cars smarter from bumper to bumper

The US$40 billion NXP-Freescale merger creates one supplier of all the chips needed for cars as they evolve toward driving themselves, executives of the two companies say.