The enormous bottlenecks in the availability of different chips now mean that even the chip manufacturers themselves are scarce. So they lack chips that are urgently needed to build the systems needed to produce chips. as the Wall Street Journal reported that the wait times for ordering new systems for chip production have been getting longer in recent months. While the delivery time at the start of the coronavirus pandemic was still a few months, manufacturers now in some cases have to wait two to three years for the systems they have ordered.
Chip manufacturers need priority
Even the delivery of machines ordered some time ago is being delayed, according to several prominent employees of major chip manufacturers and their suppliers. Meanwhile, a structural problem has arisen from an initial difficulty caused by increased demand. In their own words, the major chip manufacturers such as Intel and TSMC have therefore started to ask their suppliers from the chip industry itself for preferential treatment. Many suppliers, who in turn supply chips such as microcontrollers, are now going to treat the large manufacturers with more priority, partly because they themselves ultimately benefit from better availability of chips and tools.
Meanwhile, there is also a shortage of printed circuit boards and the materials used to manufacture them, affecting chipmakers themselves and their suppliers. Despite efforts to better supply chipmakers themselves with chips and the equipment needed to manufacture them, the prospects so far are limited. Even after the actual delivery of new systems, it often takes months before they can actually be put into use. For this reason, most manufacturers currently assume that it will take years before the chip crisis is gradually overcome. Intel recently announced that the situation is not expected to improve before 2024.
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