Feeds

Report says Cisco offloading Linksys

Barclays hired to do the deed

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

Cisco's long and inglorious retreat from the consumer business may be about to reach another miserable milestone, after Bloomberg reported Linksys is up for sale.

Cisco scooped up Linksys back in 2003 and used the brand to offer consumer and small business products. Cisco has done reasonably well in the latter market, but the consumer market has been a mess for the networking titan, with its 2009 purchase of camera concern Pure Digital Technologies and its Flip video camera going sour in just two years. A consumer video conferencing offering also fared poorly, leading CEO John Chambers to decide the company had no business outside the world of business.

Despite that decision, Linksys has continued to operate, sometimes as 'Linksys by Cisco', but has not moved beyond its small business and consumer roots. Nor did Cisco try to position it as an off-brand competitor.

Rumours about Linksys' demise have circulated before, as once Cisco moved swiftly to sell off or kill the rest of its consumer offerings it seemed natural for Linksys to be next. Those rumours came to nothing, making it a little difficult to trust Bloomberg's report that Barclays has been engaged to find a buyer.

This time the rumour at least seems well-timed given that Cisco has just acquired Meraki, a company whose WiFi assets are rather more modern and therefore more likely to be attractive to businesses of all sizes.

Ditching Linksys before Meraki comes aboard makes sense as it will help Cisco to present a less-confusing portfolio of WiFi brands.

Losing Linksys almost certainly won't hurt the networking giant. Absent imminent updates to the 802.11 standard, consumers and small businesses alike have little reason to contemplate new WiFi router purchases. The devices also run for years, while many punters probably have no idea maintenance like firmware updates are even possible, never mind necessary. It's therefore hard to see much upside in continuing to own Linksys, especially now that Meraki is aboard.

Cisco has declined to comment on the Bloomberg report. ®

Bootnote

Blogger Brad Reese says Belkin is expected to acquire Linksys.

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
Scrapping the Human Rights Act: What about privacy and freedom of expression?
Justice minister's attack to destroy ability to challenge state
WHY did Sunday Mirror stoop to slurping selfies for smut sting?
Tabloid splashes, MP resigns - but there's a BIG copyright issue here
Google hits back at 'Dear Rupert' over search dominance claims
Choc Factory sniffs: 'We're not pirate-lovers - also, you publish The Sun'
EU to accuse Ireland of giving Apple an overly peachy tax deal – report
Probe expected to say single-digit rate was unlawful
Inequality increasing? BOLLOCKS! You heard me: 'Screw the 1%'
There's morality and then there's economics ...
Hey Brit taxpayers. You just spent £4m on Central London ‘innovation playground’
Catapult me a Mojito, I feel an Digital Innovation coming on
While you queued for an iPhone 6, Apple's Cook sold shares worth $35m
Right before the stock took a 3.8% dive amid bent and broken mobe drama
EU probes Google’s Android omerta again: Talk now, or else
Spill those Android secrets, or we’ll fine you
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.