2021 may be almost over, but the situation with the low stock of high-end PC consoles and graphics cards will not improve next year.
If you missed purchasing a PlayStation 5 or Xbox Series X this year, so your chances of finding one next year won’t necessarily be much better.
This shouldn’t necessarily come as a surprise, as Toshiba warned exactly in September, but Intel has now confirmed that the semiconductor chip shortage, which is causing the problem, will continue into 2023.
“Covid has disrupted supply chains, making it negative,” said Intel boss Pat Gelsinger Nikkei. “Demand has exploded by 20% year over year and disrupted supply chains have created a huge gap… and this explosive demand has persisted.”
If Covid ever ends it will improve the situation, but the industry is also investing in new factories, to increase production, with Geslinger commenting at a new factory in Malaysia.
“It just takes time to develop that ability to respond to the peak,” he said.
The most publicized victims of chip shortages have been the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X, which have suffered stockouts since launching last Christmas.
However, the Nintendo Switch has also been affected, especially the new OLED model. At the same time, high-end PC graphics cards such as the Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 experienced similar issues, which were exacerbated by people who wanted them to be used in cryptomining rather than gaming.
The problem affects all electronic devices, but issues like server shortages are also impacting games, with Square Enix recently unable to purchase enough new servers to meet the growing demand for Final Fantasy 14.
It will also inevitably affect attempts to expand video game streaming, as Microsoft and others struggle to find the components they need.
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