Arm boss warns chip shortage will continue into 2022
Simon Segars warned that the disparity between supply of chips and demand for items powered by them is “the most extreme” he has experienced in his 30+ years in the sector.
The chip shortage was caused by a range of factors, including unprecedented demand for devices during the pandemic as well as difficulty accessing certain materials, as well as tensions between Asia and the West.
Segars told WebSummit that the semiconductor industry is currently investing some US$2 billion per week, which will eventually lift production by 50%, but that supply will remain tight in the near term. Current wait times span up to 60 weeks, with the shortage expected to have some impact on Christmas.
“Where are we going to be next Christmas? I expect this supply chain constraints to be a little better but it won’t be completely fixed,” Segars said at the tech event in Lisbon. “If you haven’t bought all your devices yet, you might be disappointed.”
Arm is one of the biggest CPU-makers for smartphones in the world, with its technology powering more than 160 billion devices worldwide. It is currently subject to a $40 billion takeover by rival Nvidia, though the deal has stalled due to an investigation by European regulators.
On top of increasing production, Segars called for “better collaboration” across the entire supply chain.
“This isn’t a short-term problem with a short-term solution,” he added.
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