Office Depot will sell a Hewlett-Packard desktop PC complete with a CRT monitor and printer for $99. The bundle, which typically sells for $429, involves a $100 in-store instant rebate and four mail-in coupons.
The offer is good from Sept. 3 through 9.
Still, you have to have the machine shipped, and shipping comes to $99.
On the flip side, consumers don't need to sign up for new Internet service as part of the deal. Other companies and stores have offered $99 computers before, but these deals often required consumers toor open an account with some other Internet service provider.
Do customers come out for these deals? Yes. In December 2005, CompUSA offered a $149 Toshiba laptop and a $99 Compaq desktop after discounts. The retailer sold 7,500 of the notebooks in two hours, or 2.5 notebooks a minute. (To get these deals, consumers had to subscribe to AOL for a year.)
September is one of the key months for PC manufacturers and retailers. The third quarter is typically the second-biggest sales season of the year because of back-to-school buying, and a significant portion of the PCs bought in the third quarter are sold during its last two weeks. As a result, companies begin to pour on the offers as the month rolls on. As a side note, some pinpoint the end of the dot-com era to, when PC and semiconductor makers surprised analysts with dire warnings about sales.
The Office Depot computer comes with a Celeron D 352 chip, an 80GB hard drive and 256MB of memory.