KEY POINTS

  • If the trend continues, consumers will soon see prices of electronics skyrocket
  • Sony claims it might not reach PS5 projected sales this year
  • Microsoft is already forecasting inventory issues beyond summer

The Xbox Series X/S and PS5 remain extremely difficult to come by until now. Despite commitments to bump up production, Microsoft and Sony might encounter even more manufacturing delays as the global semiconductor shortage reaches critical levels.

Aside from the next-generation gaming systems, analysts expect other sectors in the tech industry to experience setbacks as well.  If the trend continues, consumers will soon see prices of electronics skyrocket. Even the automotive industry is not spared from the silicon shortfall as modern models also rely on chips for various functionalities.

The Guardian points out that the scarcity was initially brought about by the shutdown of several factories and supply chains in China due to COVID-19 outbreak. Now, as these establishments resume regular operations, they cannot keep up with the demand.

“Chips are everything,” Mirabaud media and tech analyst Neil Campling told The Guardian. “There is a perfect storm of supply and demand factors going on here. But basically, there is a new level of demand that can’t be kept up with, everyone is in crisis and it is getting worse.”

For now, gamers eager to upgrade to next-generation gaming systems such as the PS5 and Xbox Series X/S have no option but to regularly monitor restocks from online and physical retailers. Microsoft is already forecasting inventory issues beyond summer.

Meanwhile, Sony claims it might not reach projected sales of its latest PlayStation console this year. Apple is currently the leading buyer of semiconductors which it uses for its expansive catalog of products. Samsung is ranked a close second to the Cupertino tech giant when it comes to chip consumption.

Campling stated: “It is incredible that Samsung sells $56bn of semiconductors to others, and consumes $36bn of them itself, finds it may have to delay the launch of one of its own products.”

In a related article, Samsung’s co-CEO Koh Dong-Jin hinted the company might not ship a new Galaxy Note this year.

For now, the PS5 and Xbox Series X are hot commodities when it comes to entertainment amidst the ongoing health crisis as evident by restocks quickly selling out each time. GameSpot notes that the chip shortage likewise affects the PC gaming market as insufficient components bottleneck the production of graphics cards and other parts as well.

PS5 Xbox Series X The PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X are pictured. Photo: Sony; Microsoft