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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 (www.intel.com) new 1-GHz Pentium III processor later this month.

After showing pre-production systems from the big three OEMs - Dell Computer Corp. (www.dell.com), Hewlett-Packard Co. (www.hp.com), and IBM Corp. (www.ibm.com) - 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, www.amd.com). 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.

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