FCC Advances ‘U.S. Cyber Trust Mark’ to Foster IoT Security

The Federal Communications Commission has issued a formal Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) for the U.S. Cyber Trust Mark labeling program for smart devices announced in July with the Biden administration. The voluntary program to provide certification for baseline cybersecurity standards is designed to help consumers make informed purchase decisions regarding Internet of Things (IoT) products. The FCC, which proposes to own the new Cyber Trust trademark and administer it in conjunction with third parties, is now officially soliciting comments from industries and the public on the scope of the proposed program. Continue reading FCC Advances ‘U.S. Cyber Trust Mark’ to Foster IoT Security

CES: Encoding Environmental Intelligence with New Chip Tech

The design of truly contextual experiences — whether for utility or entertainment — requires a knowledge of both the user and the environment they are in. This becomes especially relevant when we think of what it means to build interesting mixed reality experiences. CES this year showcased a variety of computer vision AI software tools oriented towards understanding environmental context. At Eureka Park in the Venetian, however, MantiSpectra’s chip sensor technology provided a peek into the benefits for user experience enabled by environmental intelligence arising from hardware. Continue reading CES: Encoding Environmental Intelligence with New Chip Tech

CES: Samsung Promotes Device Connectivity, Sustainability

During Samsung’s CES press conference, chief executive and head of the Device eXperience (DX) Division Jong-Hee (JH) Han emphasized twin themes for the company at this years’ confab. First is to deliver on the promise of smart devices. “It’s about connecting all the devices that make up your life from home to workplace to car,” he said. Second, he added, is “a more sustainable future.” The company’s vice president of corporate sustainability Inhee Chung announced that the DX Division will reach net zero carbon emissions by 2030, with a commitment to achieve that for the entire company by 2050. Continue reading CES: Samsung Promotes Device Connectivity, Sustainability

LG Display Reveals Stretchable Prototype That Folds, Twists

LG Display has unveiled a stretchable display form factor it says surpasses existing foldable and rollable technology. Based on a highly resilient film-type substrate made of silicon used in contact lenses, LG’s 12-inch prototype stretches to up to 14 inches. The stretchable display uses a MicroLED light source with full-color RGB and resolution of 100ppi that LG says “competes with most existing monitors.” It’s spring-wired frame gives it the durability to withstand repetitive changes to form as well as significant external impact, LG adds, describing a consistency “similar to that of a rubber band.” Continue reading LG Display Reveals Stretchable Prototype That Folds, Twists

EU’s Cyber Resilience Act Plans to Augment Security for IoT

The European Union has released additional details of its Cyber Resilience Act (CRA), proposed cybersecurity rules initially introduced last year aimed at the growing number of smart devices and the Internet of Things. The goal is to introduce effective regulations that would help curb surging cyberattacks. Major tech companies from Apple to Amazon and LG would need to meet strict new standards in the connected electronics space or face significant fines that could run as high as the greater of $15 million or 2.5 percent of a company’s worldwide revenue. Continue reading EU’s Cyber Resilience Act Plans to Augment Security for IoT

Data Act Aims to Protect EU Consumers in Smart Device Era

The European Commission has proposed new rules on who can use and access data generated across economic sectors in the European Union. The proposed legislation would require Amazon, Microsoft, Google and other cloud service providers as well as those who harvest data to establish safeguards preventing non-EU governments from illegally accessing EU consumer information. “We want to give consumers and companies even more control over what can be done with their data, clarifying who can access data and on what terms,” said Margrethe Vestager, the EC’s commissioner for competition, in announcing the Data Act. Continue reading Data Act Aims to Protect EU Consumers in Smart Device Era

CES: Support for Matter Helps Drive Smart Home Momentum

Matter was a big player at CES 2022. Built around the premise that smart homes need a single, unifying interface standard that makes devices “secure, reliable and seamless to use,” the Matter alliance now has more than 220 member companies, including Apple, Comcast, LG and Samsung. Amazon announced developers can add Frustration-Free Setup on Matter-certified devices using the Matter SDK, and Google declared its Fast Pair simple setup is supporting Matter. As companies build new smart products, Matter believes that users should merely plug them in to make them operational on the home network. Continue reading CES: Support for Matter Helps Drive Smart Home Momentum

CES: Google Pushes Cross-Platform Functionality for Android

Alphabet’s Google is making its Fast Pair Service and Chromecast capabilities more interoperable as well as improving functionality with third-party devices that use Google’s own Android OS, Wear OS or Chrome OS and third-party platforms such as Microsoft Windows, Amazon’s Matter smart home standard, and others. In 2021, the average household had 25 connected devices, up from 11 in 2019, and Google wants to free users “to pick and choose the devices that work best for you regardless of brand,” says Google vice president of multi-device experiences Erik Kay. Continue reading CES: Google Pushes Cross-Platform Functionality for Android

Amazon Glow Gives Kids Connectivity for Activities & Games

This holiday season, families may be basking in the warmth of the new Amazon Glow, which debuted in limited release September 28. The crackling 14-inch vertical tower is a combination tablet, camera and projector and features an 8-inch LCD HD touchscreen and can project up to 19.2-inches. While the $250 introductory price tag may be considered steep for a device aimed at toddlers (it is marketed for ages 3 and up), the Amazon Glow lets kids play remotely with family and friends, and can anyone really put a price to quality time across the miles?  Continue reading Amazon Glow Gives Kids Connectivity for Activities & Games

Matter Could Soon Become Smart Tech’s Universal Language

The Amazon-led universal connectivity protocol, Matter, is being marketed as the first universal casting standard to reliably work with Apple, Samsung and Google protocols, among others. Interoperability issues that smart home inhabitants have encountered getting their devices connected are legion. A key aspect of Matter’s promise of platform agnosticism is its specs for streaming video players and TV displays, prompting speculation that Matter TV could replace proprietary casting systems, including Apple’s AirPlay and Google’s Cast. Matter is an independently developed protocol developed by the Connectivity Standards Alliance due to launch in 2022. Continue reading Matter Could Soon Become Smart Tech’s Universal Language

Nvidia Introduces a Full-Stack Solution for Zero Trust Security

Nvidia is fast-tracking its cybersecurity efforts, emphasizing zero trust through new product integrations designed to protect enterprise customers from attack while supporting artificial intelligence, machine learning and server workloads that scale. Earlier this month Nvidia promoted its full-stack data center security solution: DOCA 1.2 accelerated software, running on BlueField-3 DPUs using the Morpheus AI framework — a configuration that can “secure a data center at every touchpoint,” including users, devices and the data itself, Nvidia founder and CEO Jensen Huang explained at Nvidia’s GTC 2021 event earlier this month. Continue reading Nvidia Introduces a Full-Stack Solution for Zero Trust Security

Emerging Wireless Networks Turn to the Cloud, Virtualization

The expense of building and maintaining customized client servers is driving enterprise clients to the cloud, a particularly attractive destination for those building new wireless networks for mobile smart devices. Dish and Japan’s Rakuten Group online retailer are two enterprise businesses buying into these “virtualized networks,” generally believed to offer cost efficiencies, with little to no diminishment of service (and potentially improvement). Processing resources can be allocated to locations where traffic surges and traffic can be easily shifted from one server to another in the case of technical failure. Continue reading Emerging Wireless Networks Turn to the Cloud, Virtualization

Amazon Sidewalk Rolls Out with Echo, Ring Software Updates

Amazon is slowly rolling out Amazon Sidewalk, first revealed in 2019 as an effort to create smart neighborhoods via wireless Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) and 900MHz radio signals that can expand the connectivity reach to up to half a mile. Using a small amount of the home’s Wi-Fi bandwidth, Amazon Sidewalk can connect the user with any compatible device, such as garage door openers or outdoor lights, without any additional hardware. Amazon has unveiled it first as a free software update to Echo speakers and Ring cameras. Continue reading Amazon Sidewalk Rolls Out with Echo, Ring Software Updates

How Businesses Should Prep for the Coming Ubiquitous 5G

Telecommunication companies and others are spending billions of dollars to make 5G ubiquitous, for smartphones and the Internet of Things. Speed is one benefit of 5G but also important is that its high bandwidth enables more capacity, which allows manufacturing plants and facilities to capture more data and communications. That is a game changer for a manufacturing plant with hundreds of thousands of signals from robots, HVAC and lighting systems and machinery that communicate to an asset management system. Continue reading How Businesses Should Prep for the Coming Ubiquitous 5G

EU’s Antitrust Probe Expands to Include the Internet of Things

The European Union’s antitrust unit has broadened its focus of Big Tech companies to include voice assistants such as Siri and Alexa and the growing number of connected Internet of Things (IoT) devices. The EU’s competition commissioner Margrethe Vestager noted the threat of a big company pushing the market until “competition turns into monopoly.” With regard to IoT, she pinpointed voice assistants as the “center of it all,” but included any digital device that records consumer data from Apple Watch to an Internet-connected refrigerator. Continue reading EU’s Antitrust Probe Expands to Include the Internet of Things