Chip shortage to push up PC costs

Shortages of some key technology components are expected to push up the cost of making personal computers for the first time since 2003, analysts have predicted.

The...

Shortages of some key technology components are expected to push up the cost of making personal computers for the first time since 2003, analysts have predicted.

The world economic crisis forced many manufacturers to cut jobs, delay plans to open up new factories, and scale back on production rates, which analysts said could take up to a year to be restored.

The cost of semiconductor components is set to rise 2.8% in 2010, in contrast to an average decline of 7.8% for the past nine years, according to research firm Gartner.

The expected increase is almost entirely attributable to a 23% increase in the price of DRam memory chips, which make up about 10% of a PC's cost, according to the Financial Times.

Some other components including hard drives and optical disc drives will to be in short supply and the cost of cost of flat-screen monitors will increase by about 20%, Gartner predicted.

Increases in component costs are likely to have the biggest impact on smaller PC makers, which do not have the same bargaining power with suppliers as bigger brands.

Analysts predict 2010 could see further consolidation in the PC manufacturing industry as smaller and niche PC makers struggle in the face of component price increases.

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