Dell will sound the death knell for its Pentium II PC line this week as the company introduces price cuts of 8% and Pentium II products quietly disappear from its Web site.
"With the price reductions that we are making on Pentium III (8%) 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 PC is now at the same price or less than the Pentium II 400MHz PCs of most top PC 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 roll-outs.
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 while maintaining the prices of the Pentium II.
"The difference (in price of Pentium II and Pentium III) has gone down 80% in the last three months, and the last 20% 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 the Pentium to Pentium II transition.
Dell's rivals like 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, 64Mb of RAM, integrated network card and 17in monitor has been reduced by 8% to £1,100.
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