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Intel cuts Celeron prices

The chipmaker has lowered the list prices of its top three desktop Celeron chips, likely clearing the way for its latest desktop Celerons.

Intel has lowered the list prices of its top three desktop Celeron chips by as much as 13 percent.

Intel sliced the price of its 1.2GHz Celeron the most, lowering it $10, to bring the price to $69--a 13 percent drop.

The chipmaker, which made the cuts effective Sunday, is likely clearing the way for its latest desktop Celerons, a new family of chips based on NetBurst. NetBurst is Intel's newest PC processor architecture. A more recent version of NetBurst is used for the company's Pentium 4 chip.

The new Celerons are expected to hit the market Wednesday, though PC makers are likely to wait until the following Monday, May 20, to launch new machines. That's when Intel will debut a new low-price version of its 845 chipset, a group of enabling chips used inside a PC. The chipset offers a lower price and includes a graphics processor, reducing the cost to build a PC and therefore allowing PC makers to sell their new Celeron systems for well below $1,000.

Meanwhile, Intel reduced the price of its 1.3GHz Celeron by $10, bringing it to $74, a 12 percent price cut. It also shaved $5 off the price of its 1.1GHz Celeron. The chip now lists for $64, 7 percent lower than before.

Those chips will likely now fall into the lowest-priced desktops as Intel works to replace them over time with the newer Celerons. It has said NetBurst Celerons will make up about 80 percent of Celerons sold by the end of the year.

Price cuts, in most cases, are scheduled in advance by Intel.

The chipmaker publishes list prices for processors purchased in 1,000-unit lots. However, street prices vary widely depending on supply and demand as well as the quantities purchased by individual supplier.

Intel held the rest of its chip prices steady.