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Intel has acquired the company behind ‘Killer’ Wi-Fi cards

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Intel has bought the company behind the popular Killer brand of Wi-Fi products found in laptops from Alienware, Dell, Lenovo, HP and more.

Rivet Networks, which was previously acquired by Qualcomm in 2011, makes network interface cards (NICs) that are geared towards gamers and performance users. Its technology boasts gaming-centric features such as minimizing latency and maximizing Wi-Fi bandwidth, prioritizing network traffic for applications that need it the most.

Intel confirmed on Wednesday that the Rivet Networks’ portfolio of Ethernet controllers, wireless chips and management software will join its Wireless Solutions Group, a subset of its Client Computing division. The chipmaker said plans to roll the Killer brand into its broader PC WiFi portfolio, as well as license Rivet Networks' software to customers.

“We are committed to enabling our customers to deliver the best PC experiences, especially when we have become more reliant on technology,” Chris Walker, corporate vice president and general manager of Intel’s Mobile Client Platforms Group said in the announcement. 

“We know how important connectivity is in enriching our lives. We will keep you updated on our progress and look forward to having the Rivet Networks team as part of the Intel family, developing technologies that matter to you.

Wise move

Intel’s latest acquisition makes sense. Not only has Rivet Networks has been a competitor to Intel in the NIC space for over a decade, but as reported by Anandtech, the two companies previously joined forces to develop the Killer Wireless-AC 1550 NIC. What’s more, the Intel-Killer combination can be seen in recent laptops such as the new Dell XPS 17, which features a Killer Wi-Fi 6 AX1650 module built on Intel chipset. 

Intel hasn’t said how much it paid for the company, nor when we’ll see the first fruits of the acquisition. However, chances are we’ll be seeing a souped-up Intel NIC appearing in laptops in the near future, further positioning the company as the go-to brand for gaming hardware; the company’s flagship Intel Core 9 10900K CPU continues to best out AMD Ryzen when it comes to single-core performance. 

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