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    Broadband faces a fork in the road

    As Google and AT&T race to provide super-fast 1 gigabit fiber networks to power users, more than a quarter of U.S. homes still have no broadband service at all.

  • Microsoft scrambles to simplify its licensing

    Microsoft is pledging dramatic improvements to its notoriously complex enterprise licensing, but experts are skeptical about the potential impact of the plan.

  • US court strikes down net neutrality: What's next?

    The U.S. Federal Communications Commission and its allies have several options, with most of them difficult, after a U.S. appeals court struck down most of the agency's 2010 net neutrality rules.

  • Thanks to the NSA, quantum computing may some day be in the cloud

    The NSA is spending some $80 million in basic research on quantum computing, money that may ultimately help commercialize quantum computing for the private sector.

  • Debate over NSA surveillance shifts with judge's ruling, task force report

    After six months of contentious debate over U.S. National Security Agency surveillance programs, prompted by leaks from former government contractor Edward Snowden, the third week in December may have marked a major turning point.

  • Voice calls from planes: A social debate, not a technology dilemma

    Making voice calls via cell phone aboard a plane doesn't hold much interest for U.S. airline passengers or airlines, but there isn't a technological reason to ban them, according to federal authorities.

  • Cell phones on planes may be heading for the US, but will anyone use them?

    In-flight cellular in the U.S. may be closer to reality than some consumers realize, with foreign airlines poised to extend services they already offer elsewhere. But evidence from overseas suggests the odds of being trapped next to a chronic caller are slim.

  • Top tech stories of 2013: Big Brother, wearables, and the struggles of aging tech giants

    Politics collided with the world of technology this year as stories about U.S. government spying stirred angst both among the country's citizens and foreign governments, and the flawed HeathCare.gov site got American health-care reform off to a rocky start. Meanwhile, the post-PC era put aging tech giants under pressure to reinvent themselves. Here in no particular order are IDG News Service's picks for the top 10 tech stories of the year.

  • Perspective: Privacy concerns could keep Amazon delivery drones grounded

    Amazon's nascent plan to use unmanned drones to deliver packages to customers has already raised strong privacy concerns that could ultimately nip it in the bud.

  • The latest move to kill bad patents divides tech industry

    Technology users -- retailers, in particular -- are being snared in patent infringement lawsuits, prompting Congress to eye reforms that could change how lawsuits are filed and who pays if they're frivolous.

  • FCC's in-flight cellphone plan carries a lot of baggage

    Anyone who dreads hearing one end of a loud phone call all the way from Anchorage to Miami, take heart: The plan to allow cellphones on planes could fail in more ways than an overbooked flight at a snowbound airport on Christmas Eve.

  • Perspective: Curbing data use is key to reining in NSA

    Any effort to rein in the National Security Agency after its widespread spy activities were revealed in leaked documents must focus on more than simply limiting what personal data can be collected.

  • HealthCare.gov's problems: What we know so far

    More than a month after it went live, a couple of large questions remain about the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' botched launch of HealthCare.gov.

  • What's Wrong With Healthcare.gov's Price Estimator

    In the early days of Healthcare.gov, I praised the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services for publishing a dataset with sample rates for every health plan participating in the federal health insurance marketplace.

  • New Dell won't abandon the PC

    Dell officials vow that the company will continue making acquisitions and will remain committed to its struggling PC business once its $24.9 billion deal to go private is complete.

  • Net neutrality faces uncertain court ruling in US

    It's difficult to predict how an appeals court will rule after it hears arguments Monday in Verizon Communication's challenge of the U.S. Federal Communications Commission's net neutrality rules.

  • Fear of NSA snooping could hurt U.S. cloud vendors

    Edward Snowden's revelations about the U.S. government's data collection program could cause U.S. providers of cloud-based services to lose 10% to 20% of the foreign market to overseas rivals.

  • Businesses adopting robots for new tasks

    Thanks to better sensors and other tech advances, robots are being used for new applications, including quality control.

  • What's coming next in the tech immigration battle

    Congress will begin its summer break this week without any plan for high-skill immigration. Here's what to watch for when lawmakers return in September.

  • Our Internet privacy is at risk -- but not dead (yet)

    Legislation, stealth technologies, and emerging data privacy markets are proving that the battle for our Internet privacy has only just begun

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