Wed Mar 19, 8:13 PM ET
Intel Corp (INTC.O) said on Wednesday sub-$300 laptops initially designed for poor children will soon be available to U.S. and European consumers in a move that could further push down computer prices.
PC makers in the United States and in Europe will sell a yet-to-be-unveiled, second-generation version of the Intel-designed Classmate PC for $250 to $350, said Lila Ibrahim, general manager of Intel's emerging market platform's group, in an interview with Reuters.
"This is a very big deal," said Laura Didio, an analyst with Yankee Group who follows the personal computer industry.
While the machines are intended for children, analysts said the launch will add momentum to the low-cost computing movement -- and will likely mean this year's bargain-basement laptops will have more power than in previous years.
"Particularly in a recession year, quality low-cost products are going to move well," said Rob Enderle, an analyst with the Enderle Group. …