Linksys’ mission as an entry-level line for Cisco was revealed in 2004 with the introduction of the Linksys to Cisco Trade-Up Program. And its recent re-launch of its Linkys One / Connected Office initiative just served to underscore the company’s real focus: to get businesses too small to be served by normal Cisco sales channels away from Best Buy, CDW and the like and into the orbit of Cisco VARs.
This is not to say that Linksys has conceded consumer networking to Netgear, D-Link, Buffalo, etc. One look at the shelf space devoted to Linksys products at any networking product retailer confirms that the company still intends to dominate that space as long as it makes sense (cents?) to do so. And Linksys has been as aggressive as any of its rivals at going after the draft 11n wireless market, which is still squarely aimed at getting consumers to upgrade their wireless gear.
So don’t start lighting candles for those blue and gray Linkies yet. That name won’t go until Cisco has squeezed every bit of value from it, and it looks like there is still plenty of juice yet to be had.