This is due to a number of factors, including the rise of internet bots that acquire these consoles automatically, the resale market, and more, but arguably the most important factor is the continuous chip scarcity. Because these chips are utilized in the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X/S consoles, Sony and Xbox are unable to create as many as they would want as soon as they would like. Unfortunately, after AMD CEO Lisa Su predicted that the chip scarcity would persist until 2022 in October, Intel CEO Brian Krzanich now predicts that it would remain until 2023.
According to Nikkei Asia, the United States could expect supply shortages owing to a scarcity of semiconductors used not only in next-generation consoles and PCs, but also in other technologies such as automobiles and other vehicles.
“The overall semiconductor shortage is quite significant and the semiconductor industry was growing about 5% per year before COVID,’ Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger said during a press conference recently. “COVID disrupted the supply chains, causing it to go negative. Demand exploded 20% year-over-year and disrupted supply chains created a very large gap…and that exploding demand has persisted.”
Gelsinger went on to say that building capacity to solve this gap and demand magnitude takes time. He also stated that Intel is expanding its facilities to deal with the shortfall in Arizona and New Mexico, and that he expects more to come to the United States and Europe.
This chip scarcity has impacted PlayStation and Xbox, as everyone looking to buy a new-gen system knows, but it has also had a significant impact on Nintendo. The Japanese business recently said in November that between now and March, it plans to produce 20% fewer Switch consoles, putting sales projections back by around 6 million units.