Gateway throws out PCs with single-core processors

Irvine (CA) - The third largest PC retailer in the U.S. today announced that all desktop PCs and "nearly" all notebook computers offered through its website now come standard with a dual-core processor.

Gateway is the first of the nation's main PC vendors to nearly wipe out the single-core offering from its portfolio. While the company indicated that computers sold through its retail program may still be available with single-core processors and its Emachines unit cannot afford to drop low-priced single-core systems at this time, Intel dual-cores are standard when you order a Gateway computer on the web or by phone.

Gateway's "DirectPC" line also includes Microsoft's Office Basic, which was offered for an extra $140 before, a flat panel display, as well as a guarantee that those computers will Windows Vista "capable". The desktop PCs are priced from about $800 (DX310 series) and top out at about $4400 for a system with a 965 Extreme Edition processor, two ATI X1900 XT graphic cards and a 21" LCD.

With the exception of its ultra-portable NX100X notebook all notebooks now include Core Duo dual-core processors and are available from about $1000.

Gateway's main competition has not completely dropped single-processors at this time, but is offering dual-core systems at similar prices. Dell, for example, currently offers a Pentium D 820 system with a 19" LCD for $649; a system that is comparable to Gateway's entry-level DX310 is priced at $790. HP's dual-core desktops start at around $700.

Gateway does not offer AMD processors in its DirectPC line.