After dipping below $800 from August through October, the average price for consumer computers reached a six-month high of $844 in December, according to market researcher PC Data Inc.
Among the leading brand names, Hewlett-Packard’s lowest-priced Pavilion costs $100 more than an equivalent did four months ago, while Compaq’s lowest-priced Presario desktop now costs $200 more than its predecessor did last fall.
Mark Bates, senior analyst at PC Data, says the new pricing aims to put the bulk of home PC sales at between $700 and $900 this year.
Analysts say the price hikes are being driven by a huge drop-off in competition, a healthy economy and the PC’s growing role in home entertainment.
A detailed report is available at www.zdnn.com.