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D-Link Intros Free Next Business Day Warranty Replacement



D-Link Corporation has announced a new warranty support programme that will see the company provide its customers expedient support on select business products. Dubbed “Next Business Day (NBD) replacement” programme, the new initiative is part of D-Link’s enhanced warranty support programme on selected business products starting in the UAE from April 10, 2017 with the scheme expected to be extended to other regions across the Middle East later.

According to the vendor, the free D-Link NBD programme is valid for a first three-years period from the product purchase/registration and extendable at a nominal cost after completion of the three-years warranty period. The products covered include the entire range of D-Link’s Smart and Managed switches.

Sakkeer Hussain, Director - Sales and Marketing, D-Link Middle East and Africa (MEA).

Sakkeer Hussain, Director – Sales and Marketing, D-Link Middle East and Africa (MEA).

Sakkeer Hussain, Director – Sales and Marketing, D-Link Middle East and Africa (MEA), said the company has unveiled the NBD programme as part of its extended support to channel partners and their end-user customers. Hussain said the service is part of the value-added services D-Link is offering channel partners to help them grow and strengthen their customer relationships by providing them with the ability to differentiate themselves among other competitor brands.

“We have deliberately kicked off this programme in the UAE with a view to expand the roll-out to other countries across the Middle East and Africa region,” he said. “We believe that the Next Business Day Hardware replacement with no cost to the end-user will benefit businesses and corporates to reduce the cost-of-ownership of networks that are critical to their day-to-day operations. D-Link aims to strengthen its fundamental pillars of product reliability and end-customer service as a key for growth in the MEA region.”

He added that end-user customers can now maintain their critical networks with minimum down-time without the added costs of purchasing extra NBD replacement support and can directly register themselves for the D-Link NBD programme for free.

To be eligible for the services offered under NBD, the end-user customers must register the applicable product with D-Link within 90 days after purchasing and can check the product warranty and apply for NBD anytime through the newly launched dedicated D-Link NBD portal. D-Link MEA plans to expand the NBD support to other regions and include more business products to the list later this year.

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ASUS ROG Rapture GT-BE98 Review: Blazing Speeds, Low Latency



The ROG Rapture GT-BE98 throws its hat into the ring of premium Wi-Fi 7 (802.11be) quad-band routers, promising top-tier performance, extensive features, and a design that screams “gamer.” But is the GT-BE98 all flash and no frags, or does it deliver the lag-free, feature-rich experience that competitive gamers crave? Let’s find out!

ROG doesn’t shy away from bold aesthetics with the GT-BE98. The router boasts a futuristic, angular design dominated by a large, aggressive vent system. Illuminated ROG logos and customisable Aura Sync RGB lighting further enhance the “gamer cave” vibe.

Functionality is woven into the form. The eight high-gain antennas are strategically positioned for optimal signal distribution. The abundance of ports caters to even the most demanding setups: one 10Gbps for WAN/LAN, one 2.5Gbps for WAN/LAN, one 10Gbps for LAN, three 2.5Gbps for LAN, one RJ45 10/100/1000Mbps for LAN, one USB 3.2 Gen1, and one USB 2.0.

Other physical buttons on the device include WPS, Reset, Power, and LED Control. Inside the box, you get the GT-BE98 quad-band gaming router, an RJ-45 cable, a power adapter, a Quick Start Guide, and a warranty card.

WiFi 7
Wi-Fi 7 takes everything you love about Wi-Fi 6/6E and cranks it up a notch. Imagine wider channels (320 MHz bandwidth) for smoother data flow and a more efficient way to transmit information (4K-QAM). Plus, Wi-Fi 7 introduces a game-changer called Multi-Link Operation. This lets your devices use multiple channels and frequencies simultaneously, boosting speed, and reliability, and reducing that dreaded lag. The result? An unmatched network experience, especially for online gaming. This means lightning-fast connections, near-instantaneous responses, and rock-solid stability.

The GT-BE98 comes equipped with AiProtection Pro, a suite of security features powered by Trend Micro. This includes protection against malware, intrusion prevention, and infected device blocking. Additionally, Lifetime Free AiProtection keeps the router’s security definitions up-to-date, ensuring ongoing protection against evolving threats. Parents will appreciate the built-in parental controls that allow for filtering content and scheduling internet access for connected devices.

The heart of the GT-BE98 lies in its powerful hardware. A quad-core processor paired with ample RAM ensures smooth operation, even under heavy loads. Supporting the latest Wi-Fi 7 standard, the GT-BE98 unlocks access to the coveted 6 GHz band, offering wider channels and less congestion, compared with the crowded 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz bands. This translates to potentially faster speeds, lower latency, and a more stable connection – crucial factors for online gaming.

The GT-BE9 also comes equipped with ASUS’s AiMesh technology, allowing you to create a mesh network by connecting multiple ROG routers for seamless Wi-Fi coverage throughout your home. Gamers with sprawling residences or those struggling with dead zones will appreciate this functionality.

Furthermore, features such as Game Acceleration prioritise gaming traffic, ensuring that latency-sensitive online games receive the bandwidth they deserve. Similarly, the built-in VPN Fusion allows you to simultaneously run a VPN for specific traffic while maintaining a normal internet connection for other devices. This caters to gamers who might want to use a VPN for privacy while still enjoying lag-free online gameplay.

While raw specifications are impressive, the true test lies in real-world performance. During our tests, we found that the ROG Rapture GT-BE98 is built to deliver on its promises, offering a significant upgrade for gamers seeking a lag-free and ultra-responsive online experience.

Software Suite
The ASUSWRT interface provides a comprehensive suite of controls for managing the GT-BE98. Users can toggle granular settings such as network traffic prioritisation, parental controls, and guest network management. The interface is well-organised and offers helpful information for even novice users.

The Armoury Crate app acts as a central hub for managing all ROG devices. Here, you can customise RGB lighting effects across compatible ROG components, monitor system performance, and access ROG Game First V for further network traffic prioritisation.

The ASUS ROG Rapture GT-BE98 is a formidable contender in the premium Wi-Fi 7 router market. It delivers top-tier performance with blazing-fast speeds, ultra-low latency, and extensive features specifically designed to cater to the needs of serious gamers. The powerful hardware, support for Wi-Fi 7, and ASUS’s AiMesh technology create a potent combination for ensuring smooth online gameplay and a strong, reliable connection throughout your home.

Price: AED 3889

ASUS ROG Rapture GT-BE98 AED 3889
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ROG doesn’t shy away from bold aesthetics with the GT-BE98. The router boasts a futuristic, angular design dominated by a large, aggressive vent system. Illuminated ROG logos and customisable Aura Sync RGB lighting further enhance the “gamer cave” vibe.

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Review of the ASUS ExpertWiFi EBM68 in the UAE



ASUS announced the new ExpertWiFi EBM68 router at Computex this year. The router is tailored specifically to meet the demands of various commercial establishments, spanning from cosy cafes to mid-sized enterprises. The ExpertWiFi EBM68 boasts a tri-band AX7800 mesh system, making it an optimal choice for mid-sized businesses or expansive locations such as hotels and retail stores with multiple floors. It is also, however, suitable for small offices or home offices (SOHOs).

Out of the box, the ExpertWiFi EBM68 looks like a conventional mesh Wi-Fi system, consisting of two identical routers that can be placed in different locations and then linked together to provide more excellent range and reliability than a single router. The two routers support tri-band Wi-Fi 6, with a top speed of 7.8Gbps.

However, the difference between the ExpertWiFi EBM68 and a conventional mesh system becomes apparent when you explore Asus’ new ExpertWiFi app. This provides several features designed specifically for business users, including the ability to create multiple networks that can be allocated to different departments or groups of users within your organization. You can create a guest network for people visiting your office or customers in public venues such as restaurants and hotels.

The ExpertWiFi EBM68 also allows you to create a ‘guest portal’ to help businesses promote their brand to customers using your public Wi-Fi. In addition, these routers offer support for VLAN and VPN to bolster the security of sensitive business data and information. They also facilitate hassle-free network expansion, sport space-efficient designs, and can be conveniently managed via the ASUS ExpertWiFi app.

During the initial setup process, using two identical routers may initially lead to some confusion. However, one of the routers conveniently features a label that reads, “I’m the main router – start with me!” to guide you through the setup process. Furthermore, the ExpertWiFi EBM68 package includes a wall-mount kit from Asus, allowing you to securely affix the routers high on the wall, keeping them safe from potential damage. Elevating the routers above head height with the wall-mount kit can also enhance the wide distribution of the Wi-Fi signal.

While it may not boast the flashy antennas and glowing lights commonly seen on high-end routers, the ExpertWiFi EBM68 still delivers remarkable performance and functionality, making it a suitable choice for bustling offices and public spaces. This mesh system offers tri-band Wi-Fi 6 technology, broadcasting on two distinct 5.0GHz frequency bands and the 2.4GHz frequency band.

Moreover, Asus asserts that this two-device system can cover areas as extensive as 5,700 square feet, accommodating multi-story offices and large venues. For even greater coverage, you have the option to expand your mesh system by acquiring up to ten additional ExpertWiFi EBM68 routers or by integrating the ExpertWiFi with other ASUS routers compatible with the company’s AiMesh technology, making it well-suited for larger buildings.

The ExpertWiFi router series comes packed with lots of bells and whistles. These include Self-Defined Network (SDN) capabilities, support for VLANs and VPNs to fortify the security of business data, streamlined options for expanding networks, space-efficient designs, and effortless device management facilitated through the all-new ASUS ExpertWiFi app.

SDN allows you to segregate and prioritise devices by offering up to five SSIDs. The Scenario Explorer simplifies network configuration, allowing you to select a scenario aligning with your business needs. This process automatically adjusts advanced settings within a few steps, creating polished guest portals and separate networks for employees and IoT devices.

The ExpertWiFi routers cater to multiple VPN protocols, including L2TP/IPSec, PPTP, OpenVPN, and WireGuard, ensuring advanced security measures. Additionally, these routers incorporate AiProtection Pro, powered by Trend Micro, to shield businesses and connected devices from cyber threats.

A noteworthy feature is the backup WAN functionality, which allows you to connect your ExpertWiFi devices to Android or iPhone devices via a USB cable. This enables the utilisation of their mobile hotspot for the entire local network in situations where on-premises internet services are unavailable.

The ExpertWiFi series is expandable, with upcoming products such as access points, wired VPN routers, and managed PoE+ switches. This flexibility allows businesses to tailor various topologies and combinations to precisely meet their unique requirements.

The two-pack ASUS ExpertWiFi EBM68 make it a good option for growing businesses to invest in. It offers multi-network versatility, which is ideal for businesses that want to provide Wi-Fi for their customers. In addition, Asus’ Self-Defined Network features make it easy to set up multiple networks for different teams or departments. The ASUS ExpertWiFi EBM68 is thus highly recommended.

Price: TBA

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The ExpertWiFi EBM68 also allows you to create a ‘guest portal’ to help businesses promote their brand to customers using your public Wi-Fi. In addition, these routers offer support for VLAN and VPN to bolster the security of sensitive business data and information.

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Linksys to Launch the Velop Pro 6E Mesh System Soon in the Middle East



Linksys has announced the latest addition to its WiFi 6E product portfolio – the Linksys Velop Pro 6E, the first of its new Designer Series using the “nature-inspired” droplet design, along with advanced features that provide the ultimate WiFi 6E experience at an affordable price point. WiFi 6E offers an extra 6GHz band connection that helps cut down on interference and improves speeds to your connected devices.

Powered by the Qualcomm Immersive Home 316 Platform, the Linksys Velop Pro 6E brings incredible range and coverage with WiFi 6E, enabling users to stream, download, or work with a faster and wider connection, and more devices on their network. Each tri-band node has one 1Gbps Ethernet LAN port for connecting wired devices to wireless networks. With the latest Linksys Mobile App, the Velop Pro 6E is easily set up in under 10 minutes and managed remotely with security and other useful features such as guest access, parental controls, and more.

“Today a Connected Home with ubiquitous Wi-Fi is the new normal, but people want the network devices to blend into their decor,” said Vice President of Experience, Jeevan Patil. “We have acted on that demand with our Velop Pro 6E, the first in our new Designer Series, using our droplet design, inspired by nature, in colours such as Carbon Black, Pebble Gray, and Pure White.”

“People not only want the home network device to blend in, but they want to install it quickly,” said Principal Engineer, Michael Forbes. “With our Velop Pro 6E, we reduced the setup time by two-thirds, so a complete system can be set up and operational in under 10 minutes.”

The Linksys Velop Pro 6E is available in three configurations with the 1-pack starting at $199. The 1-pack covers ~3,000 square feet, the 2-pack covers ~6,000 square feet, and the 3-pack covers up to ~9,000 square feet. The Velop Pro 6E joins Linksys’ WiFi 6 lineup including the Hydra Pro 6E and Atlas Max 6E.

Additional features and benefits:

  • Improved setup – With a quick and easy process, users can set up 3 nodes in under 10 minutes.
  • Security – Protect your devices with automatic security updates, a separate guest network, and other advanced features through the app.
  • Fortinet DNS Filtering – Powered by Fortinet’s FortiGuard Labs threat research team, the FortiGuard DNS Filtering Service guards against user connections to malicious or inappropriate websites and content.
  • Stable, blazing-fast coverage – Qualcomm Immersive Home 316 Platform blends innovative mesh capabilities with advanced WiFi 6E features.
  • New form factor – Latest droplet design brings improved thermal management, coverage, and performance in a more compact footprint.
  • Revised packaging – New recyclable packaging made from 65% recycled material.
  • Improved mesh technology – Providing users with a simple self-optimized capability for collaboration, streaming, gaming, or large gatherings with multiple devices. The network is automatically monitored regularly to ensure a quality experience.

Stay tuned for regional availability and pricing.

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