The semiconductor shortage, most notably the impact on the graphics card market is old news at this point. Different ODMs and OEMs blame the shortage on different factors, but the gist of it is that everything is in short supply, and the entire supply chain from substrates to foundry capacity and yields are affected. We already reported multiple times in the last couple of months that NVIDIA’s high-end GPU inventory took a dive in the early months of 2021. ASUS execs confirmed this at the company’s recent investor conference, explaining that the shortages will continue for the time being.
The most pressing issue for GPUs right now is the shortage of Nvidia’s GPUs. There was a quarter-over-quarter decrease in shipments [in Q1]. Because of that shortage, we are seeing [graphics cards] price hikes.ASUS
However, as per ASUS, there are two reasons behind the current situation: Undersupply and poor yields for NVIDIA’s latest RTX 30 series GPUs which are fabbed on Samsung’s 8nm process. Generally, the shipments of graphics cards drop in the last quarter of each year with a further dip after New Year’s. This happens after a season of peak sales in Q3, after which demand diminishes. However, this time around, the drop didn’t quite occur, resulting in undersupply which was further aggravated by poor yields for NVIDIA’s latest GPU lineup.
As for when we will be able to resolve this gap [between supply and demand], it is really hard to tell. Our guess is that the gap might have been caused by lower yields upstream. As for when [Nvidia] can increase that yield is something hard for us to predict.ASUS
As for when the shortages will subside, ASUS’s response was similar to NVIDIA’s own: It’s really hard to tell. However, there’s little (to no) chance of supply improving in the first half of the year. You can only expect things to get better by the end of 2021, with recent reports claiming that Q3 won’t be any better.