Intel comprehensively nixes across-the-board CPU price hike rumour

Intel Core i9 13900K Raptor Lake chip on a promotional box
(Image credit: Future)

Intel has categorically walloped a rumour that it was planning to hike consumer CPU prices across the board. It was claimed earlier this week that the company had sent a letter to some distributors warning of the price rise and blaming it, among other things, on the need to invest in new fabs and restructure.

While informing its channel partners of specific pricing changes is not particularly peculiar, the notion that Intel would get into the weeds in such comms with a sob story concerning its investment strategy isn't terribly plausible. And so it's not a huge surprise that the company has flatly denied any such communication took place.

Speaking to our chums at Tom's Hardware, an Intel spokesbod quoth thusly:

"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."

Of course, this does not mean that Intel CPU prices are set in stone forever, just that the rumour of imminent price hike across all existing Alder Lake and Raptor chips in the "next two to four weeks", as claimed by PCGamesHardware, is not for real.

Without a particular wish to dance on another media outlet's proverbial, the idea that Intel would issue a vague pricing directive to consumer CPU channel partners that included justifications pointing to its investment and restructuring needs ought really to have raised red flags.

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It's not remotely how Intel normally operates. Any pricing missives are typically extremely formal, limited to predefined and thoroughly to-the-point templates and pertain to explicit products SKUs.

It also doesn't fit with Intel's MO to pre-warn of a broad change in pricing rather than communicate very specific price changes. Even less plausible were purported references to raising prices on future unannounced products which by definition don't even have prices to raise.

Anywho, what with PC component sales not just in the doldrums but more like stranded in a Pacific-sized dead calm and well into the drinking urine stage, right now doesn't seem to be the best time to be testing PC enthusiasts' collective resolve with a price hike. 

Jeremy Laird
Hardware writer

Jeremy has been writing about technology and PCs since the 90nm Netburst era (Google it!) and enjoys nothing more than a serious dissertation on the finer points of monitor input lag and overshoot followed by a forensic examination of advanced lithography. Or maybe he just likes machines that go “ping!” He also has a thing for tennis and cars.