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Update to the chip shortage


So it’s the end of May the the chip shortage is still going strong. It’s caused many companies and projects to have to either delay their release date or to come up with an alternate way of manufacturing their product. This article will give you an update about the chip shortage and how it has affected different projects.

Due to a lack of silicon, we are in a global chip shortage. The primary cause is that two manufacturers  in particular, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company and United Microelectronics Corporation are encountering production delays due to higher demand for other products such as cell phones and laptops, which has caused them both a decrease in capacity utilization rates. 

This global chip shortage situation was only made worse by Russia's embargo on European Union exports because of the Ukrainian crisis.

We all also know that thanks to a mix of cost cutting and an industry-wide slowdown, chip fabrication plants are not running at full capacity. This has caused a serious shortage in production when it comes to these computer chips and now we are seeing the impact all across Silicon Valley. Companies like Apple, Intel, AMD, Nvidia, and Google have already taken measures like factory shutdowns or delays in new products until the shortage is over but we still don’t know if or when that will happen. According to various media reports on May 2, 2014, ITRS (International Technology Roadmap for Semiconductors) chairman, Don Jessop predicted at a conference that by the year 2017, demand for DRAM and NAND flash memory chips will rise around 15% each year. This is even more reason to forecasts that the shortage will not be ending anytime soon.

The chip shortage has caused many companies to either delay their product or come up with an alternate way of making it. Sony, a game console company, is working on solving this problem by developing an entirely new line of chips. This has been a significant setback for Sony and the PlayStation 5. 

"In the years to come, we will see more and more companies coming up with their own alternate solutions as they do not want to be left in the dust. The newest chip being developed is an autonomous processor that will provide all types of computing power from artificial intelligence to industrial controls."

Another example of this is Honda's motorcycles that have been delayed because of the lack of silicon. The "HondaRevolution" project has been pushed back a few years and now they are looking for different ways to conceal the energy-storage device. 

"The company will offer low-emissions motorcycles with flexible lithium-ion batteries that can be isolated to keep them from overheating, even if the motor or power electronics go down."

In many cases surrounding this chip shortage, there have been other companies that have had to plan production in other countries. At least one Chinese company  is also looking at an outside solution, which might mean they will be doing more outsourcing of their products. Also, most consumer electronic companies like Nintendo have had to delay their release dates for new products because of this chip shortage.

There have been a lot of different reasons given for the shortage in silicon. One reason is that two producers are experiencing production delays due to higher demand for cell phones and laptops. Another reason is because Russia's embargo on exports from Europe has caused even less supply. Other factors like cost cutting or an industry-wide slowdown are also contributing to this shortage of silicon chips.

The chip shortage has caused many companies to either delay their product or come up with an alternate way of making it and this includes Sony, who have created an alternative type of processor as well as Honda, who are looking for a new energy device that will not overheat their batteries if the motor or power electronics go down.

In the past 5 years, the number of USB ports has doubled while connectivity has increased to three times as many connections. This is great for people who like to have all of their gadgets and devices on them at once but bad for people who are trying to charge those gadgets on longer trips. So what did Microsoft do about it? They created a universal charger that can charge multiple devices, no matter what make or model of device it is.

"The universal charger would also be compatible with most laptops and desktop computers."This will allow everyone with a laptop or desktop computer to use one charger instead of having multiple chargers lying around the house or office when traveling. 

It is unlikely that this shortage of chips will be solved any time soon because the demand for chips is only going to increase. The PlayStation 5 and the Microsoft Project Scarlet might produce enough consoles for a couple of years until or when we see a more significant change in production.

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