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Dell Offers Sub-$750 Dual-Core Notebooks, But...

Dell Offers Sub-$750 Dual-Core Notebooks, But...

The Round Rock, Texas-based computer maker is now pricing some of its Inspiron E1505 systems, complete with dual-core processor upgrades, for $749 via its web site. The systems run Windows XP Media Center Edition; an upgrade to Windows XP Pro jumps the price to a still-lowball $898.

Some of the early reviews on the systems are somewhat of a mixed bag, including this one:

The question is: will needs change in relation to the price tag?

By contrast, the HP Compaq Business Notebook nc6320 is going for a street price of $1,349, according to HP.com this morning. And the Lenovo 3000N Series sports a dual core system at an entry street price of $999.

What Dell discovered late last year is that when it gave away printers for free, or very low cost, customers tended not to use them or buy supplies in the all-important after market. It's not clear at all that will happen with Dell's aggressive notebook pricing, and the computer maker seems happy to keep the pressure up in a strained market.

Dell reports its next quarterly earnings on May 18. We'll see then whether it is hurting itself now just as much as it is hurting its rivals, like it did in the second half of 2005.

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