Recent rumors of increases to Intel’s CPUs are overblown. Yesterday, German media outlet PCGamesHardware posted a story claiming that Intel had told several German wholesalers that the company would soon raise the pricing of its “Core” processors for a number of reasons, including to build new semiconductor fabs. Several US media outlets soon picked up the report, fueling the rumor. When we reached out to Intel for more details, the company threw cold water on the rumors:
“Generally, Intel does not comment on speculation regarding price changes to its portfolio. However, we can confirm that Intel has not sent the letter described to customers or partners and has not initiated a price change to its CPU portfolio at this time. We have no further comment to share on the matter.”
The original report was more than a bit flimsy; a forum member at PCGHX claimed they had been told by wholesalers that Intel would hike the pricing of all of its shipping CPUs within a few weeks, and that letters had been issued to wholesalers to that effect. The PCGamesHardware report further expanded on the forum post, saying the individual noted the letters to the wholesalers said that all of Intel’s existing Core processors, like Alder Lake, Raptor Lake, and Raptor Lake Refresh, would be impacted, as well as the upcoming Core and Core Ultra chips.
That’s at least somewhat believable, but the report then takes a serious left turn, going on to claim Intel expanded on the reasoning behind the price cuts in the letters, saying it needed to increase pricing to fund its restructuring, along with ‘refinancing’ for existing and upcoming fab construction projects.
Surely Intel wouldn’t need to justify its price hikes to wholesalers, nor include language to that effect in its communications, making this a thoroughly unbelievable report that should have raised some red flags. That didn’t stop a few publications from picking up the story today, and given the natural order of things, the story would have surely gathered more steam over the coming days.
Intel’s statement shuts down the speculation firmly, and while it doesn’t rule out any future price hikes, the company assures us not to expect them to occur imminently. That makes sense — even though we are seeing a glimmer of light at the end of the tunnel, the CPU market continues to slog through the worst market conditions it’s seen in 30 years, so now probably wouldn’t be a good time to raise CPU pricing.