Prioritizing gamers

Channel Post speaks with Amanullah Khan, Managing Director, Linksys – Middle East, Turkey & Africa about the recently launched gaming router WRT32X and the company’s strategy for the gaming community.

How is your gaming router, coined by you ‘first true gaming router’, different from other routers?

The WRT32X router is the first wireless router built purely for gaming and features AC3200 speed, enterprise-grade hardware and the Killer Prioritization Engine, to ensure that gaming is of highest priority. When we looked into what others called ‘gaming routers’, all we found were standard consumer routers but with some added ‘gamer-bait’ visual accents coupled with some smart marketing, but no real technical substance or innovation. This drove us to create a true gaming-focused router that delivers the best networking experience for online gaming with the lowest latency and fastest speeds.

What promoted you to enter into the gaming market?

Gaming has evolved from a childhood past time to a lifestyle. In the Middle East we see gaming revenues growing incredibly fast with 25% YoY growth, according to the latest Global Report by Newzoo. With this rapid increase in popularity, arose the need for gamers to ensure their gameplay is prioritized and not affected by other online activities.

Gamers are multi-taskers, so traffic is not only limited to the actual gaming, but often extends to talking with teammates over VoIP, watching competitor gameplay on Twitch, and downloading a large patch to their favorite game, all at the same time. Not to mention the traffic from friends and family members that are also streaming video, downloading software updates, or checking their email. Today’s home networks are more crowded and congested than ever and to address the requirements of the gaming community we decided that a separate router was required rather than just few upgrades or enhancements.

Is Linksys looking to expand its gaming portfolio? If yes, what products can be expected and when will the new breed of products hit the stands?

We intend to maintain our focus on the gaming community with our upcoming portfolio. We will be announcing a new product focussed on gamers during CES 2018 in January 2018.

You have recently teamed up with Rivet Networks to incorporate the Killer Prioritization Engine (KPE). What is KPE and what edge does it provide to gamers?

Together with Rivet Networks we have incorporated the Killer Prioritization Engine into this new Linksys WRT Gaming Router – the WRT32X. This first of its kind collaboration will provide serious online gamers the only router that is specifically optimized for gamers with Killer-enabled gaming PCs and laptops. The Killer Prioritization Engine automatically identifies, prioritizes and accelerates gaming network traffic above all else. This results in peak ping times being reduced by 77%. The complete interface and firmware is custom-built from ground up for gaming traffic control.

What innovations have you introduced in your gaming routers to stay ahead of the competition and what can gamers expect from you going forward?

We are committed to give serious gamers the best networking experience for online gaming with the lowest latency and fastest speeds. We realize that the network is a crucial element in the thin line between winning and losing. The Killer Prioritization Engine is our unique innovation which we presented during Gitex 2017.

Currently our research and development teams are working on new features for the recently launched WRT32X, but this is only the beginning.

How do you ensure that your partners are in sync with the innovation that you bring to your portfolio and the changing trends in the market?

During Gitex 2017, Linksys announced the launch of an integrated partner portal that gives its partners resources and structured training to help them sell its products more effectively. Partners will benefit hugely from the portal, combining a wealth of information on our innovations such as Mesh technology or Killer Prioritization Engine. With a structured training scheme, it equips retailers and resellers with the skills, knowhow and confidence to operate more effectively and thus boost their profits. This is a big step towards Linksys’ continuous investments in channel partnerships.