back to article Belkin buys Linksys from Cisco

Cisco has found a buyer for its unwanted and unstrategic Linksys low-end networking brand, in the form of accessories and small networks player Belkin. Both companies have issued gushing notifications of the deal, but haven't let it be known how much cash or other fungible instruments will change hands to make it happen. It's …


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  1. Zola

    I avoid Belkin like the plague

    Linksys were once an OK brand, but now that they're owned by Belkin I'll never buy them again.

    Belkin are renowned for being overpriced, and more often than not incompatible in some small but frustrating way with kit from other vendors. It's as if Belkin introduce these incompatibilities on purpose. Their WiFi gear used to be the worst for this, and that's not a mistake you make twice.

    Maybe Linksys will bring some sanity to Belkin but I won't be paying to find out.

    1. Stacy

      Re: I avoid Belkin like the plague

      Exactly what I was thinking. I've used Linksys since I started putting a wireless network in my home, and it has always been the easiest and most reliable kit I've used.

      Friends and relatives on the other hand who have no idea what they are buying went with the cheaper Belkin (why would you choose to spend more? "Stace your insane when it comes to buying gadgets, you always spend too much") and then expected me to spend hours sorting out why the hell they would not work. In the end I refused to spend my time sorting our their cheapness and told them to get the kit I recommended if they wanted me to spend my afternoons fixing their network.

      What on earth do I tell them to buy now :(

      1. PeeKay
        Thumb Up

        Re: I avoid Belkin like the plague

        I moved away from Linksys a few years ago and use Mikrotik routers now. Cheaper than Linksys, yet extremely powerful.

    2. AndrueC Silver badge

      Re: I avoid Belkin like the plague

      > Belkin are renowned for being overpriced, and more often than not incompatible in some small but frustrating

      > way with kit from other vendors.

      On the plus side they are one of the few companies to sell a TOSLINK cable with gold plated connectors :)

      Sadly one day ten years ago I needed a TOSLINK and it was a Sunday so the only choice I had was Comet (or maybe Currys, never could tell them apart). That meant paying £15 for a poxy cable and the packaging proudly announced it had gold plated connectors to improve fidelity.

      It was one of those moments I wished I was wearing a paper bag over my head when I got to the checkout. I felt a right prat. But I wasn't going to have my shiny new amp sat on the floor all day in silence. Please forgive me.

      1. AndrueC Silver badge

        Re: I avoid Belkin like the plague


        Hi fidelity!

      2. PC Paul

        Re: I avoid Belkin like the plague

        In my experience over many years and many products, Belkin cables are good, but anything electronic is not so good.

        I'd buy the cables any day (if I can find a good price...) but the routers/APs/kvms? Never.

        So the question is will mixing in Linksys bring Belkin up or drag Linksys down (more)?

    3. Silviu C.

      Re: I avoid Belkin like the plague

      They failed to bring any sanity to Cisco. Their support for the home users was appalling. The E900 I had bought from them had a weird PPPoE issue and I went through 3 indians during the course of a week until I was contacted by someone that actually spoke English and understood English. Unfortunately, by that time I had returned the stupid thing and bought an Asus model.

      One thing they still had going for them was the quality of the HW even for the cheap models. Since Belkin owns them now, that shall be "fixed". RIP

      PS: They did fix the PPPoE issue, eventually, as stated in the changelog for the latest firmware

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    A marriage made in Heaven

    .. or Hell.

    They are well matched product lines on quality.

  3. Khaptain Silver badge

    Low cost company buys out low cost

    This doesn't sound great. Linksys stuff is usually quite good , Belkin on the other hand are usually to be avoided. What a strange deal.

    I wonder if it will also mean an end to the availability of Roms for the Linksys routeurs/APs..

    1. P. Lee

      Re: Low cost company buys out low cost

      Seeing as they overlap, I wonder which tech will be culled.

      With more homes running 24x7 server devices, perhaps we'll see the return of the ADSL card for ARM or x86.

  4. JaitcH

    A match made in Heaven - Crap + Crap = More Crap

    Belkin seems to be in the bag business - it has over 180 bags/covers which are banged out in China for next to nothing. I can buy the same junk for around USD$0.50-USD$1 in China, but they sell it for tens of times as much in the USA.

    I bought a laptop security cable as the Kingston's were out of stock. The Belkin has a split 'hook' that operates like a pair of scissors to attach to the laptop. All it really does is cut the metal socket and enlarge the hole. Still the cable and padlock are OK and I use them on my bicycle. I bought a Kingston replacement.

    As for Dlink - we all know about this junk, TP-Link is far superior and you can boost the output with software hacks!

    1. paulf

      Re: A match made in Heaven - Crap + Crap = More Crap

      +1 on D-Link=crap

      Not touched D-Link since I bought a USB ADSL modem about 10 years ago. Not only were the drivers somewhat flaky, but it took about 5-10 minutes to train onto the ADSL signal after booting the computer. My Netgear DG-834Gv2 (still going strong 8 years later) was able to train on to the same line in about 60-90 seconds.

  5. the spectacularly refined chap

    "Linksys by Cisco" only ever created confusion anyway

    I'm sure I can't be alone in having interviewed candidates for junior positions who claimed knowledge of "Cisco enterprise networking devices" only to find on closer examination that really meant they had a £50 Linksys DSL router at home. Most of them didn't appreciate that this didn't fit the bill even when it was pointed out, after all, all routers use web configuration and have DHCP enabled by default anyway...

    1. Tim Bates

      Re: "Linksys by Cisco" only ever created confusion anyway

      It got worse - I've got a pair of rack mount switches bought about 2 months apart. Same model. Same SKU. On top, they have their brand in giant letters. One says "LINKSYS", the other says "Cisco".

      Both came with a web interface with the "Linksys" logo - this version didn't work on anything by Internet Explorer 6, which is barely surprising for Linksys.

      Both got updated to a new firmware, which says "Cisco" all over it (no mention of Linksys).

      Hmmm. That raises a question. If it says Cisco all over, but was at some stage sold as Linksys, who will take over support? Are my Cisco Small Business SPA303 and SPA504G phones going the Belkin way or staying Cisco?

  6. Rob Moir

    Linksys were never good

    I do like the idea of this "strategic entanglement" though. Someone obviously heard the old adage about how you don't make an eagle by stapling two turkeys together and obviously thought: "OK. So what about 3 turkeys"

  7. Hayden Clark Silver badge


    .... RIP. Sigh.

    1. Tim Bates

      Re: WRT54GL

      To be fair though, they were getting a little elderly. 802.11n has been out for ages, and there's already gear available for 802.11ac (though it's still a little too drafty yet IMO)

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Avoids Confusion

    I worked for a major UK bank out in Asia and the CIO who was looking to cut costs asked why we couldn't use Cisco Linksys Wireless Access points which were S$100 instead of Cisco APs at S$1000. Turns out the Linksys supported WPA2 Enterprise and technically we could use them. Obviously no centralised management, roaming, rogue AP detection, etc, but CIO was happy and insisted we install them and save a few S$ on providing a basic WiFi network. The Cisco account manager was horrified that a FTSE100 company would buy and install Cisco Linksys instead of Cisco. So was I.

    Having said that they made some good devices and the range of the old WRT-54G still seems vastly superior to APs today.

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  10. jason 7

    My heart always sinks...

    ...when I visit a customer having internet problems and they have a Belkin.

    I have to admit I gave up on Linksys gear several years ago too. Never seemed to last more than a couple of years for me.

    Strictly a Draytek man now.

    1. Tim Bates

      Re: My heart always sinks...

      We don't spend more than 5 minutes on Belkin network gear. If we can't fix it in 5, it gets replaced.

      We used to only stock Linksys for ADSL modems. But they dropped the non-wireless models, increased the prices to stupid levels, and made configuring them even more retarded than it had been.

      Switched to TP-Link and have been surprised at the quality and usefulness for the price.

  11. circusmole

    Just threw out a Belkin WAP...

    For some reason that neither I nor Belkin "support" could fathom out, it would just not work with a new laptop at home. This particular laptop worked fine with any other wireless router/WAP that I could find. It caused me a couple of weeks of extreme frustration and I'm glad to see the back of it. So, as well "never again" to Belkin kit I suppose the same will now go for Linksys gear.

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