Intel to blitz the channel

Intel to blitz the channel

With the launch of Pentium III, Intel Australia clearly believes it has to mount its biggest ever product assault on and through the local channel.

A pre-launch television campaign combined with a major channel-based launch push and print media program is adding up to an almost overwhelming promotional barrage for the release of the new processor.

Intel national sales manager Archie Wilson has described the Pentium III launch as a huge logistics exercise and "the biggest thing we've done", which will see demonstration systems in 300 channel outlets - mostly higher traffic locations - on the February 28 launch date.

"The outlets we've selected are those carrying a local brand, as well as about 50 or 60 major mass merchant sites such as Harvey Norman, Retravision, Clive Peters, Bing Lee and others that are expected to stock the tier-one brands."

Intel has also just completed a round of GID (genuine Intel dealer) core training with the local channel assemblers and their retailers to ensure that both stores and their suppliers are Pentium III capable from the launch.

Merchandisers will be working in stores to dress up the outlets with Pentium III paraphernalia. A roving demonstration team of 50 will be in stores running a range of "really cool applications" for a month following the launch with a particular focus on what is claimed to be the enhanced Internet capability of the Pentium III.

"There has been a lot of work done with software developers and Internet service and content providers to make sure there is plenty of Pentium III-optimised software and content at launch time," Wilson said.

"This is targeted at mainstream consumers, including first-time buyers, not just enthusiasts or high-end markets."

Most of the major overseas vendors are expected to announce 450 and 500MHz Pentium III-based models by launch date, but Wilson said that Intel has been particularly keen to involve and supply its local Australian channel.

With the new instructions set incorporated into the processor, Intel's claim of it representing a major shift and "a better Internet experience" will be surely put to the test.

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