Trying to buy an Xbox Series X or PlayStation 5 has proved a challenge since the rival consoles launches. So much so that used units sell for hundreds of dollars over their retail price. Part of the restriction has been demand, but chip supply issues also slowed availability. Microsoft’s Xbox chief now says console supply problems will continue through to 2022.
Speaking to The Wrap, Phil Spencer says it is likely Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S consoles will continue to face supply issues into next year, including through the holiday season. He says while chip shortages are a factor, other supply constraints are also in play:
“I think it’s probably too isolated to talk about it as just a chip problem,” says Spencer. “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.”
There have been chip supply issues throughout 2020 and 2021, mostly caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. It is not a problem unique to consoles and has also been a factor behind slowing PC sales. Car manufactuers have also reduced production.
It is widely believed the shortage will continue, with Nvidia suggesting the shortage could last for most of 2022.
Last week, AMD said demand for the PS5 and Xbox Series consoles is behind its own GPU shortage. AMD is the sole GPUs supplier to both Microsoft and Sony, so it is bound by a contract to keep building for those devices. In fact, the company predicts demand for the consoles will stay high until 2022.
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