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Netscape cuts prices on retail products

Now that it has stopped charging for its browser, Netscape is cutting prices on its retail products and compensating retailers for any losses incurred.

Now that Netscape Communications (NSCP) no longer charges for its flagship browser, it has decided to cut prices on its retail products and compensate retailers for any losses incurred.

The standard editions of Navigator and Communicator now are free, but retail versions that come bundled with free Internet access and third-party software still carry a price tag. Netscape will slash the price to resellers by $10 and reimburse retailers the same amount for each unit that remains in stock on January 31, group product manager Sol Goldfarb said today.

Retailers have no obligation to pass the $10 savings along to customers, but Netscape still is cutting the recommended street price of the Communicator Internet Access Edition to $49.95 and the Communicator Deluxe edition to $69.95. Both products also come with a mail-in rebate of $30, dropping the prices to as low as $20 and $40.

Netscape also is doubling the mail-in rebate for the Netscape Publishing Suite, effectively dropping the estimated price from $89.95 to $49.95 on retail shelves. The package includes Communicator, Web publishing tools, and graphics.

Retailer Egghead Software said this week it would close its chain of stores and sell on the Internet instead. Goldfarb declined to comment on what impact the closures would have on Netscape's sales.

The Communicator Professional Edition, which is not available in retail stores, now will cost $29, Netscape chief executive Jim Barksdale said last week. The professional edition adds a scheduling calendar, 3270 terminal emulation, and network administration tools to the main Communicator lineup of Internet software products.