1-GHz Pentium IIIs Coming to a Computer Store Near You

Processors in consumer PCs gain speed with such regularity that no matter how fast the latest processor is, a new one - usually from a rival manufacturer - quickly follows, rendering the previous leader obsolete.

The processor wars, however, may soon fade away. Several of the biggest OEMs announced plans to release consumer PCs powered by Intel Corp.'s ( new 1-GHz Pentium III processor later this month.

After showing pre-production systems from the big three OEMs - Dell Computer Corp. (, Hewlett-Packard Co. (, and IBM Corp. ( - at the Intel Developer Forum in Palm Springs in February, sources at HP say that the vendor will start shipping consumer PCs with the 1 GHz processor later this month. Corporate PCs will not be available from HP with the new processor until June.

IBM is expected to announce its 1-GHz systems next week.

The release of 1-GHz consumer machines would give Intel a decisive victory over chief rival Advanced Micro Devices Inc. (AMD, Since August, when AMD released its first Athlon processor, the companies traded the lead in the race to a 1-GHz processor. When AMD released a 750-MHz Athlon processor in late 1999, Intel countered with an 800-MHz Pentium III. Athlon promptly one-upped Intel with an 850-MHz Athlon.

Both companies had publicly announced that their 1-GHz processors would be released in the second half or middle of this year.

Intel is also slated to release 866-MHz and 933-MHz Pentium III processors. - Isaac Slepner

About the Author

Scott Bekker is editor in chief of Redmond Channel Partner magazine.