Gateway follows job cuts with price cuts

Less than a week after announcing plans to slash 2,250 jobs, Gateway announced a happier sort of cuts Monday: price cuts.

The PC maker has dropped prices by US$100 on certain models in three of its notebook families, the entry-level Solo 1400s, the thin-and-light Solo 5350s, and the full-featured Solo 9550s, spokesman Lisa Emard said. Prices were cut on a fourth family of notebooks, the Solo 3450 series, a few weeks ago, Emard said.

Gateway also upgraded some features on a few of its desktop models. It replaced the CD-ROM drive with a DVD (digital versatile disc) drive and doubled the RAM to 256M bytes on its Solo 1400SE desktop, then dropped the price by $100, to $999, Emard said.

On the Gateway 700SE, priced at $1,299, the PC maker replaced the CRT (cathode-ray tube) monitor with a flat-panel display and added a combination DVD and CD-RW (CD Rewriteable) drive, instead of the CD-RW drive that shipped with previous versions, she said.

Gateway also dropped the price of its Gateway 910C small business server by $200, to $499. The 910C uses Intel Corp.'s 1.2GHz Celeron processor with 256K bytes of memory cache, and includes a 20G-byte hard drive and 128M bytes of RAM.

The price cuts follow Gateway's fourth quarter earnings announcement last week, when it reported that net income had increased from the year earlier but that revenue had plummeted more than 50 percent, to $1.1 billion. It said it planned to lay off 2,250 employees and close 19 of its retail showrooms.

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