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ASUSTeK Computer, the world’s largest maker of mainboards, is about to launch a yet another product lineup aimed at entry-level market segment. Sixteen month after the company started to sell affordable mainboards, the firm is seeking to offer inexpensive graphics cards.

In early 2003 ASUS began to supply its X-series mainboards aimed at entry-level market supporting lower performance and capability list compared to fully-featured platforms from the company. According to reports, the X-series has so far gained huge popularity among end-users and the Taiwan-based maker of computer components has decided to offer inexpensive graphics cards targeting the same – entry and mainstream – market segments.

DigiTimes web-site claims that ASUS had shipped 3.65 million graphics cards in the first seven months of this year, up 25% on the same period last year. With the introduction of the X-series graphics cards, the firm may increase sales of its graphics cards to 8-10 million units by year-end, up from 6.25 million units in 2003.

While ASUS pins a lot of hopes on entry-level graphics cards, graphics chip company NVIDIA Corp. recently blamed Intel Corp. and its i915G chipset with integrated graphics core for its lower than expected sales of entry-level graphics chips. Recent market trends also indicate that cheap graphics cards lose market share to core-logic sets with built-in graphics cores. Besides that, Santa Clara, California-based NVIDIA said it had experienced increasing pricing pressure from ATI Technologies in the entry-level market segment.

It is unclear which graphics processing units ASUS is likely to use with its new X-series of graphics cards, though, there is not a lot of time left for official roll-out, as the introduction is expected to happen in September, 2004.

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