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Intel picks Dell over HP for free PCs

More bang for your buck, less bucks

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It's as easy as Dell for Intel employees.

The chipmaker has ousted HP as its supplier of choice for a free employee PC program that Intel recently reinstated. Intel workers receive $1,000 to go toward a new Dell of their liking. Intel started the free PC program three years ago in conjunction with HP, but put it on hold as the economic downturn hit. With a recovery not exactly in sight, the revamped version of the giveaway comes with a few strings attached.

For starters, the $1,000 coupon is less than in times past. Exactly how much less? Intel will not say. In addition, employees only have a four week window in which to make their purchase. Even with these restrictions, it's a heck of a nice program to provide for 78,000 staff.

There is, however, cause for concern for some of Intel's slower employees, as a result of the wording on Dell's special PC giveaway Web site. At first glance, the relationship between Dell and Intel appears to be but a figment of one's imagination.

"It's your chance to get the PC of your dreams," the site reads. "DREAM BIG. Now you can turn your dreams into reality."

That's one reality for three dreams. What kind of PC is this exactly? Is there a Jungian connection between Dell and Intel that we don't know about?

Sadly, no. A journey into the Wintel collective unconscious would be far more interesting that the standard kit provided in the program. The $1,000 will get an Intel worker a Pentium 4 desktop running at 2.20GHz with 256MB of memory and an 80GB hard drive. Employees can pay a bit more for add-ons and extra horsepower, if they so desire. ®

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