Sources close to Intel Corp. are leaking that the Pentium 4 line of PC chips will be available in the last week of October. The orchestrated disclosures are probably meant to counter the dramatic and widely-covered news of the chip maker’s plummeting share price in response to downward revised revenue estimates, indicating a slightly less rapid increase in sales.
Pentium 4s will have a higher clock speed, a faster, 400MHz system bus with dual-channel Rambus direct RAM (RDRAM) memory. To defray the added cost of Rambus memory, Intel will pay a $70 subsidy for every Pentium 4-based computer using RDRAM. Sources differ as to the speed of the first chips to be released though there is agreement that they will be between 1.3GHz and 1.5GHz and in limited quantities. Analysts say that architectural changes in the new line will yield, primarily, better multimedia performance in early releases but will allow for overall improvements in later versions.