Intel is discovering that computers powered by its top-of-the-line Pentium chip are surprisingly appealing to home users. Richard B. Pierce, Intel's multimedia marketing director, says that about half of Pentium computer purchases are made through retail channels, indicating strong consumer demand. Intel is working to stimulate this demand, recently running "Pentium Demo Days" promotions at such retailers as CompUSA.
Why the home-market bonanza? Recent price cuts mean Pentium may cost only $200 more than the fastest computers based on older 80486 chips. That amount of money may be less intimidating when buying one computer for the home than when buying hundreds for an office. Also, home multimedia applications featuring sound and animation can require more computer horsepower than word processing and other office chores.