Dell will sound the death knell for its Pentium II PC line this week as the company introduces price cuts of eight per cent and Pentium II products quietly disappear from its Web site.
"With the price reductions that we are making on Pentium III and Celeron, price wise it doesn't make sense to buy Pentium II any more," said James Griffiths, regional product marketing manager for Dell desktops.
"Our Pentium III 450MHz PCs is now at the same price or less than the Pentium II 400MHz PCs of most tier one vendors," he claimed.
Despite removing Pentium II from its Web site, Dell will maintain the Pentium II line until August. Then it will only supply customers with pre-arranged product rollouts.
Intel, however, has not yet fixed a date for killing off the Pentium II. The company has been accused in the past of pushing unwilling customers into product migration. However, the chip maker has been steadily reducing the price of the next generation Pentium III and low end Celeron processors whilst maintaining the prices of Pentium II.
"80 per cent of the difference [in prices of Pentium II and Pentium III] has gone in the last three months, the last 20 per cent will go in the third quarter," Gordon Graylish, director of marketing for Intel architecture Emea, told PC Week. He said that migration to Pentium III had been much faster than with Pentium to Pentium II transition.
Dell's rivals, such as Compaq, IBM and Hewlett-Packard, are unlikely to follow suit in dropping the Pentium II until they have sold stocks of the product in their warehouses and those of their distributors and resellers.
As part of a series of price cuts last week, the most basic model of Dell's Optiplex GX1 with 450MHz Pentium III, 64MByte of Ram Memory, integrated network card and 17" monitor has been reduced by eight per cent to £1,100. For more stories see this week's issue of PC Week UK
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