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Intel reschedules P4 price cuts to 1 February

Day before Prescott launch

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Intel has brought planned price cuts across its Pentium 4 processor line forward two weeks to 1 February, Far Eastern PC company sources have claimed.

So suggests a DigiTimes report, which says that the chip giant will drop the prices of its 2.8GHz P4s - one with HyperThreading support, the other without - to $178 and $163, respectively, the same prices it currently charges for the 2.6GHz P4s.

The cuts represent falls of 18.5 per cent and 15.5 per cent, respectively.

1 February is a Sunday - the day on which Intel traditionally makes price cuts. The day after, it is expected to formally launch its 90nm 'Prescott' processor. Further cuts to the P4 price list are anticipated on 15 February. At this stage, it's not clear whether those later cuts have been abandoned, or simply moved back to the 1st.

Prescott parts at 3.4, 3.2, 3.0, 2.8 with HT and 2.8GHz minus HT are expected to debut at $637, $417, $278 and $218 and $193, respectively. We'd anticipate Intel to adjust the prices of current 130nm P4 at those clock speeds downward, but the company may be planning to keep the prices the same - for the chips above 2.8GHz, at any rate - in order to encourage take-up of the 90nm parts over their older equivalents. 'Northwood' P4s - the 130nm variant - are roadmapped to be phased out by Q4 this year.

Certainly, Intel has committed itself to "aggressively" ramping up Prescott volumes throughout the year, having delayed the part for so long. ®

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