If your current computer is getting on a little, it’s best to start planning to replace it sooner rather than later. Not so long ago it was very easy to go online or visit your favourite tech store and buy a brand new desktop, laptop or tablet, just like that. In 2022, things look very different. Personal computer sales are at an all-time high; people’s buying patterns are changing, too. And the worldwide chip shortage is an established problem.
The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way we buy tech. One factor in this is the rise – and continuation – of at-home and hybrid working. Businesses have had to invest in better mobile technology to ensure that their team members can safely and easily access all the data and systems they need, wherever they happen to be. Consumer demand for top-end gaming PCs also rose as people found new ways to keep themselves entertained at home – a trend that is set to continue.
A recent report by marketing intelligence firm IDC shows us how this plays out in numbers. Ultra-slim laptops have the biggest market share with 44.3% of sales, followed by traditional laptops at 26%. Traditional desktops, in contrast, make up 18.1% of sales. The emphasis is clearly on flexibility and mobility.
Supply and demand
The rising need for new devices should have been great news for tech manufacturers. Unfortunately, there were complications. Periodic lockdowns, staff shortages and transport issues affected the whole of the supply chain. This made it increasingly difficult to get a laptop or PC from factory to consumer within a reasonable time.
These same issues also made it much harder to obtain the raw materials and basic components used to make computer chips. Combined with the explosion in demand, it led to a crisis that is still affecting consumers in many different areas of life. Not just computers but also cars, LED lighting fixtures, medical devices and even household appliances all rely on these chips.
The worldwide chip shortage was already an issue in the first half of 2020, when the pandemic was just beginning, but it really peaked in the summer of 2021. If you were lucky enough not to be directly affected by it, you probably know at least one person who suffered. So what’s ahead in 2022? Will things improve?
Industry experts foresee that the shortage will continue for at least a couple more years. It’s hard to know exactly how the new Omicron variant will affect supply chains, but they are cautiously optimistic that the situation will improve in the second half of 2022. In the meantime, it’s important to think ahead. Planning technology purchases ahead of time will avoid costly delays and last-minute disruptions.
A reliable IT support partner, like One Technology, can review your infrastructure and help you decide exactly what you’ll need and when. If you’d like to talk over your technology needs, just get in touch.