The PS5 and Xbox Series X are in short supply, and that's without taking the scalper scourge into account. The issue is largely down to a semiconductor shortage that has affected a wide range of tech products, including smartphones, as well as cars. While we were warned that the shortages could last until the end of the year, it's now looking likely that they'll stretch even further; into the distant future of 2022.
Semiconductor manufacturers have been warning of the scale of the situation for a while now, and it's getting so severe that over in the US, president Biden has signed an executive order to address "vulnerabilities" in the supply chain, but for now, the shortage continues.
Bloomberg (opens in new tab) reports that Taiwanese panel supplier Innolux Corp. has warned that these chip supply issues could spill over to next year, with a huge array of products suffering shortages and maybe even price hikes as the competition to secure them intensifies.
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Innolux president, James Yang, says: "Supply at foundries is very tight. Capacity in the chip packaging and testing space is also tight. The chip supply bottleneck could still remain unresolved in the first half of 2022."
He adds that chipmakers aren't upping their production capacity for 8-inch wafers used in power management chips, and given that both 5G phones and car manufacturers require them, the increased demand paired with the 11-month lead time isn't helping matters.
Sony has been replenishing PS5 stock at retail this month, which you can follow with T3's PS5 stock tracker, and we've seen some stores release more Xbox Series X inventory, but the hardware sells out quickly, with gamers competing against bots to get their hands on them.
Scalpers have garnered enough attention throughout the console launches to spark conversation around making the practice of reselling tech like this illegal, in the same way that scalping tickets is illegal in some countries.
With shortages set to last until midway through next year, and competition for components high, scalpers won't be going anywhere for a while, and even though we advise waiting to get hold of a PS5 or new Xbox through retail channels, not everyone will be able to fend off the temptation of paying extra to finally secure one.
Some countries are seeing gamers fight back against scalpers, but we recommend sitting tight and keeping an eye on our PS5 and Xbox Series X stock tracker so you don't pay over the odds for a new console.