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11/8/2005
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Dell Dips Into AMD Waters

In its first shift away from an all-Intel lineup, Dell is offering retail versions of some AMD Athlon 64 processors. That's raising speculation that the PC giant might adopt AMD in its systems; Dell says they don't now, and won't comment further.

News that Dell is offering a select group of packaged processors from Advanced Micro Devices on its Web site doesn't necessarily indicate a shift in the direct marketer's systems strategy.

Dell, Round Rock, Texas, is offering AMD Athlon 64 processors in retail packages on its web site, but still is Intel-only in all of its systems, a Dell spokesman said.

"Dell is constantly evaluating new technologies and at the present time, we don’t have AMD processor-based systems in our portfolio," the spokesman said in a statement sent to CRN. "Dell.com offers ten of thousands of products to our customers. Why can you find AMD processors there? For the same reason they are available in other outlets – customer demand."

Dell currently is one of the last hold-outs offering Intel processors exclusively in its systems. Rivals such as Sun Microsystems, IBM and Hewlett-Packard all include AMD chips in at least some of their systems.

A recent report from Wall Street firm SG Cowen had noted that there have been rumors that Dell was considering picking up AMD chips for some of its systems. But the firm largely downplayed the possibility of AMD inside Dell.

About any possible negotiations for Dell to pick up AMD processors for its systems, an AMD spokesman would say only that Dell continuously evaluates AMD technology.

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