Xbox Series X and PS5 shortages are expected to continue into 2022 according to latest reports.
If you're a gamer you're probably well aware of the shortage already with the next generation consoles being extremely difficult to get hold of since their launch in November 2020, retailers around the world have had very limited stock available to buy which sells out within minutes of going live leaving many without a chance of getting their hands on the latest consoles. But what is causing this shortage?
Like many things the pandemic has had a huge effect on the supply chain for many items we once took for granted. One of these items being the chips we find in all our electronic devices. It isn't just consoles that have been effected by this shortage but also smartphones, tablets, laptops and much more.
This is simply down to the manufacturing plants of these chips not being to produce enough to meet the demands required. The surge in demand of electronics is the main cause for this, consumers and businesses starting buying new devices such as laptops for staff to work at home, children also needed these devices for home-schooling.
Console manufacturers have struggled with stock shortages for over 18 months now, after the Covid-19 pandemic shut down essential supply chains and saw demand for gaming devices increase significantly as countries implemented social distancing measures.
Why some parts of our lives feel like they are returning to some normality after the pandemic, this shortage doesn't look like it's going to be going away any time soon with reports that it could last well into 2022 and potentially even 2023.
Chip Manufacturing Plant
So what are the people in charge saying?
Xbox boss Phil Spencer has recently said that the shortage of Xbox Series X/S consoles will likely continue well into 2022, he said "I think it's probably too isolated to talk about it as just a chip problem,"
"When I think about, what does it mean to get the parts necessary to build a console today, and then get it to the markets where the demand is, there are multiple kind of pinch points in that process. And I think regretfully it's going to be with us for months and months, definitely through the end of this calendar year and into the next calendar year.
"The thing that's most disappointing is just the fan disappointment," he continued. "People really want this new generation of consoles - they're good consoles, both from us and the other platform holders - and they want the new functionality. We're working hard to bring them to market but it's going to be a challenge that we'll work through for quite a while."
Last month, Toshiba also said that the supply of materials needed for console makers to produce semiconductors will 'remain very tight' until at least September 2022.
Another key figure in the electronics industry Lisa Su, who is the CEO of AMD also said that chips supplies for the first half of 2022 to be 'likely tight', however she does expect for the global shortage to be less severe in the second half of the year and new manufacturing plants begin to meet the demands. “It might take, you know, 18 to 24 months to put on a new plant, and in some cases even longer than that,” Su said. “These investments were started perhaps a year ago.”
Lisa Su, AMD CEO
So to summarise, the shortages aren't going to be going away any time soon and anybody looking to pick up one of the next generation consoles in the Christmas period is going to find it very difficult.
We do recommend only using authorised sellers and avoid purchasing from individual resellers who will no doubt be selling at an increased price and may also be scammers.
And remember, good things come to those who wait.