There was a massive oversupply of computer chips from Samsung, Micron and others on the market even before the recession hit. These are the central components in memory devices that speed up your computer and can be purchased at places like Staples and Best Buy or online. Now, with demand plunging during the recession, memory prices have gone into virtual freefall. "It's almost charity," says Lawrence O'Connor, CEO of OtherWorldComputing.com, which sells computer components including memory. "We're at lows we've never seen before." Standard PCs bought more than 18 months ago typically came with less than a gigabyte of RAM; they may be running painfully slow with today's more demanding programs. Rather than buying a new computer, though, you can invest in more memory to get similar results. To upgrade to two gigabytes may cost as little as $30 down from $100 two years ago and could double your computer's speed. Get up to four gigabytes for $50 down from $200 two years ago. O'Connor predicts these prices will double or even triple in short order when the economy recovers.
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