Cisco Intros Stylish New Linksys E-Series Of Routers

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News Posted: Tue, Apr 5 2011 3:52 AM
We have never really viewed a router as a fashion icon. It's a useful tool, period. Most of them aren't very pretty, but then again, most of them are well-hidden. So why bother with a stylish router? Well, if you've nowhere else to hide one, you might as well get one that you aren't afraid to leave sitting around. In recent years, Cisco's Linksys brand has embraced style in a way that few other companies have, particularly in the networking space.

The new Linksys E-Series is proof of that initiative, with an entire family of swank routers and switches looking to handle upticks in bandwidth from video calling, Netflix digestion, etc. The new family includes five routers, all of which are designed to handle transfers approaching 450Mbps . There's also a 3x3 spatial stream configuration for improved coverage, external power amplifiers to maintain signal strength over a greater distance and reduce dead spots, and virtual USB technology to connect USB printers, storage and devices to the network.

Linksys plans to ship these soon for between $59.99 and $179.99, with the most expensive version having dual-band 802.11 and the fastest transfer support.

Cisco Announces Next-Generation Linksys Wireless Routers and Switches

Home Wireless Leader Unveils Sleek New Design with Unmatched Performance
for Premium Video, Gaming, and Entertainment Experiences

San Francisco, CA April 5, 2011 – Cisco® today continued its legacy of leadership in home networking with the launch of its new Linksys® E-Series family − a complete suite of powerful and easy-to-use next-generation wireless-n routers and switches. With sales of wireless-enabled products such as tablets and game consoles steadily growing and Internet video usage exploding, consumers are seeking greater performance, reliability and simplicity from their home wireless networks. The new Linksys wireless–n routers and switches, available today, offer a complete range of options that set a new standard for speed, range, and ease-of-use, while also sporting a visually-appealing new design.

The new Linksys E-Series lineup includes five routers, each with the latest technology in home wireless for a multitude of home entertainment experiences. The new routers not only provide the performance needed for today's connected home, but also help to future-proof for new and emerging media technologies that are gaining traction with consumers, such as Internet-enabled TVs and Cisco's umi telepresence. Designed with faster speeds (up to 450 Mbps*), other key features for select routers in the line include a 3x3 spatial stream configuration for improved coverage, external power amplifiers to maintain signal strength over a greater distance and reduce dead spots, and virtual USB technology** to connect USB printers, storage and devices to the network. The full line also boasts a new industrial design that combines sleek contours and advanced functionality − recently earning the prestigious 2011 Red Dot Product Design Award for product design, innovation and quality.

"With more than 70 million routers sold, Linksys brings a decade of leadership and innovation to create products that consumers trust for the best wireless quality, performance and experience," said Simon Fleming-Wood, vice president of marketing, Cisco Consumer Products. "Our new Linksys line offers an array of solutions for the needs of today's home networking consumer - from basic Internet surfing to video and music streaming, to gaming."

According to industry research group IDC, only 39% of US homes have wireless, while only 11% are using wireless-n technology. Over the next five years wireless-n adoption is expected to nearly double due to the growth of wireless connected devices such as tablets, smartphones, and Internet-enabled TVs that require the latest wireless technology for optimal performance. (IDC, Worldwide Home Networking 2010-2014 Forecast Update, Doc.# 225479, Nov. 2010)

Cisco Connect Software Enables Easy Setup and Network Management

Each of the Linksys E-series routers include the acclaimed Cisco Connect software that makes it easy for consumers to set up and manage their wireless home network effortlessly. Unlike other wireless products that require 20 to 30 complicated steps to set up a single computer, Cisco Connect takes you through three simple steps from start to finish. The included Cisco Connect software makes it easy to: 1) add additional devices to the network, 2) set parental controls, 3) provide Internet access for guests on a separate guest network and 4) customize personal security settings such as passwords. Advanced users can also configure and manage their routers via the web browser.

The new routers feature the latest version of Cisco Connect, which now includes an Internet Speed Test that can check the bandwidth and speed of a user's Internet connection.

New Switches Enable Easy Network Expansion and Power Saving Modes

The three new Linksys switches enable faster and simpler wired connections. New features include plug and play of Ethernet-enabled devices, Quality of Service (QoS) for traffic prioritization, auto-sensing ports, and power saving features.

Pricing and Availability

There are eight new products in the Linksys family -- five routers and three switches. The suggested retail prices for the routers range from $59.99 to $179.99. Prices of the switches range from $29.99 to $74.99. The full line of Linksys routers and switches are available starting today at retailers nationwide or by visiting the Linksys website at www.linksys.com/store.
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Style is not really important, size can be though. I am glad to see one of the more major players embracing the new 450Mbps speed though.

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JOMA replied on Tue, Apr 5 2011 10:21 AM

Style? Really? Who cares what it looks like. I want rock solid performance and tight security controls.

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rapid1 replied on Tue, Apr 5 2011 11:36 AM

I agree omega glad to see one of the major players going with the 450 Mbps spectrum chips as well. I don't know though because with a big player like Cisco using it, it also seems like a stall somewhat as well. I mean this 450 spec has actually been floating around for a bit, so I would rather hear something about something wireless past N really especially from a player who has the R&D Cisco does.

As for what your saying JOMA I agree on that to, my router sits below a desk with the modem and VOIP mini router so not really looking sor stylish. I guess some are though, or at least Cisco hopes so.

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acarzt replied on Tue, Apr 5 2011 2:24 PM

450Mbps? I want a 900Mbps router :-D

Also... these things remind me of the Apple Magic Trackpad lol

http://www.apple.com/magictrackpad/

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OSunday replied on Tue, Apr 5 2011 10:14 PM

Any comparison or benchmark vs. previous linksys/cisco E-series routers?

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But is it true 450 Mbps? Because there already exists a Cisco router capable of 450 Mbps, but that's 300 on one band and 150 on the other. In which case Netgear makes one that's 300 on both bands, making 600. But all the same, it's great to see that the prices haven't changed from the current (that is, outgoing) generation.

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That's a damn good questions. I have a Netgear WNDR3700 which does the 300/300 duel band routing, I have owned it for about a year and so far it is rock solid even though it did not run WW-DRT very well I was having web page timeouts and had to revert to stock firmware.

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acarzt replied on Fri, Apr 8 2011 10:59 AM

The catch is that wireless will broadcast on multiple antenae. It has the potential to hit XXXMbps but only if the receiving adapter can receive the signal on so many antenae.

Soooooooo if you have 4 Antenae, or 4 spatial streams broadcasting at 150Mbps each... the receiving station must have an adapter that can receive all 4 spatial streams to get to 600Mbps... other wise it will only do 150 or 300 or 450, depending on what it is capable of.

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acarzt replied on Fri, Apr 8 2011 11:01 AM

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IEEE_802.11n-2009#Number_of_antennas

Scroll to "Number of Antennas" and that can explain it better. You can also read the data rate section to understand that part a little better too :-)

They explain it better than I can lol

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