So here we are , going on year three with Covid and all the great things it bring us. Ok. It has done nothing but create supply shortages, inflation, with rising costs and empty shelves. Is this real and is it going to end?
The global chip shortage was prompted by the Covid-19 pandemic and the surge in demand for electronics. Consumers and businesses started buying new laptops and servers to cater for staff working remotely and children being home-schooled. So, whereas worldwide semiconductor sales declined between 2018 and 2019, in 2020 sales grew 6.5%. This rapid growth has continued in 2021, and according to trade organization the Semiconductor Industry Association, sales for May 2021 were 26% higher than the same time last year.
The vast majority of manufacturing is being carried out by two companies in East Asia – Taiwan’s TSMC and South Korea’s Samsung. These foundries manufacture as much as 70% of the world’s semiconductors. Last last year, the U.S. placed restrictions on Semiconductor Manufacturing International (SMIC), the biggest foundry in China, barring it from getting advanced chip manufacturing gear, and making it much harder to sell its finished products to companies with U.S. ties.
Given the many obstacles in the way of fixing the chip supply chain, there’s one thing everyone may have to get used to: Just be prepared to live with your gear longer. Corporate suppliers trying to eke out another year or two before they refresh their business machines. For gamers, there’s surely a healthy backlog of titles for your existing consoles, so don’t stress about not being able to grab that PlayStation 5 or Xbox Series X
Most industry executives have cautioned that the shortage won’t ease until the second half of this year, with some products continuing to be delayed by the scarcity of parts into 2023. While the industry may never be able to escape its roller-coaster nature, the current demand boom may last until 2025.
In conclusion, be patient and don't cause undo pressure on yourself. It's going to be a long ride through this pandemic and politics before it is back to normal.