PC components may soon see a much better situation in terms of supply meeting demand according to a new report, but some areas may still remain problematic to some extent, including graphics cards.
As noted by Tom’s Hardware, Counterpoint Research recently published statistics on global PC shipments (which fell 4.3% year-on-year in the first quarter of 2022), noting that component shortages are set to decrease in the second half of this year.
The Counterpoint report states: “Since the end of 2021, the gaps between supply and demand have narrowed, signaling the imminent end of the lack of supply across the broader ecosystem. Among all PCs and laptops, the supply gap for the most important components such as power management ICs, Wi-Fi and I / O interface ICs has narrowed. “
Indeed, as we head into the second half of 2022, only four areas of the broader PC components market will run out of supply, and even those will only be around 10% drifting away from meeting demand according to Counterpoint estimates. (while in 2021 supply was down below demand by up to 20% or even 30% in some areas, causing major problems as we most obviously saw with graphics cards last year).
Sadly, one of those problem areas that may remain a thorny prospect the report highlights is GPUs, with supply still not expected to meet demand later in 2022. Other problem areas will be the management IC. power supply for LCD (monitor), as well as some components of the motherboard and Wi-Fi chip.
Analysis: The GPU situation still looks quite promising to us
The main area of concern for the PC ecosystem here, then, is that graphics cards aren’t marked for a full reset this year. But then, a full return to normal is one thing, and a possibly marginal supply deficit (under 10%) – perhaps within certain categories or price ranges of GPUs – should still allow prices to normalize, overall. , and take the wind from the sails (and sales) of scalpers.
We’d also like to caution against reading too much into this estimate of GPU availability, as the report is a very broad forecast here – a broad overview of the upcoming state of the entire components market – and we’ve already seen some signals elsewhere than the market. of graphics cards is already making a recovery of sorts, well before the start of the second half of 2022. These cannot be ignored.
Furthermore, it is the second half of the year that both AMD and Nvidia have openly stated that we should see much better GPU stock levels on the way, plus we must not forget that Intel is also coming to the discrete graphics card market with its Offerings. desktop Arc (in theory within the next couple of months). This in itself will cause inventory to rise and should fuel price competitiveness as well (although the magnitude of the impact on price tags may be exactly dependent on Intel’s approach and the amount of production Team Blue can collect. ).
In our books, things seem optimistic enough for GPUs to soon be mostly out of the woods we’ve been stuck in for far too long now, not that there aren’t potential dangers to all PC components when we look at the situation in. China in recent times, with more supply chain disruptions caused by Covid blockades.
Likewise, there are other forces to consider on the demand side of the equation in terms of inflation and possible declines in spending, with the weakness in consumer demand already observed by Counterpoint in those declining shipping levels of PCs, and for Chromebooks losing sales momentum, for example. So, to some extent, the demand and supply swing will straighten out even with a lightening of the latter burden …