Chip wars: Intel slashes some processor prices by more than half

The move follows similar action by rival AMD earlier this week

Intel Corp. slashed prices on some desktop PC microprocessors by more than half today, raising the stakes against rival Advanced Micro Devices Inc., which cut prices earlier this week.

Users should see the price reductions translate into substantially lower prices for powerful desktop PCs in coming months. The microprocessor is the most expensive component inside a PC, and both Intel and AMD have cut prices on some of their most powerful chips.

Intel marked down the price of its Pentium D processor, the 960 that runs at 3.6 GHz, to $316, down 40% from $530 in early June, according to a new price list published on its Web site.

The company also chopped prices on some of its Pentium 4 processors that support hyperthreading technology. The 3.6-GHz version of the processor with an 800-MHz front side bus now costs $183, down 54%. The 3.2-GHz model was marked down 61% to $84, and the 3-GHz version was marked down 58% to $74.

Intel also trimmed prices on some laptop processors, but none by more than 1%. Prices of server and workstation processors remained unchanged.

On Monday, AMD pared prices on a number of its desktop chips and some laptops. For instance, it cut the price of its dual-core Athlon 64 X2 5000+ to $301, down from $696 in May. It also cut the price of the Athlon 64 X2 4600+ by 57% to $240 from $558.

Price competition is the latest weapon the two companies have turned to in their fight for microprocessor market share. AMD has gained on Intel over the past few quarters thanks to the launch of some advanced processors, but Intel has come back recently with new offerings of its own.

The world's largest chip maker today unveiled what's been billed as its most significant new processor launch in over a decade, the new Core 2 Duo processor lineup. The 10 new chips Intel will offer should start showing up in systems in coming months, starting with desktops in early August.

Intel's new price list can be found online.

AMD's July 24 price list is also available online.

Copyright © 2006 IDG Communications, Inc.

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