Video game consoles and smartphones are getting harder to find this holiday season

In the six weeks leading up to Christmas, some of Apple’s biggest new products – including some iPhone 13 models, some newer iPads and AirPods – experience delays well into December, depending on model type, colors and shopper location, according to analysts and online checks conducted by CNN Business.

Last week, some Google Pixel 6 Pro devices showed late January shipping dates for orders; on Monday, certain models were listed as sold out on their website. Game consoles like the Xbox and PS5 are almost impossible to find due to delays due to Covid-related production challenges and the huge gap between supply and demand.

The wait times for popular technology products are always changing, but the challenge for shoppers is clear. “Right now, iPhone 13 and gaming consoles are experiencing demand exceeding supply by about 20%, which is a telling [sign] for Black Friday and holiday stress, says Wedbush analyst Dan Ives to CNN Business. “We’ve also seen the new AirPods 3 already on backorder with shortages into Christmas [week]. “

The shortage of chips, which has also had a major impact on the automotive industry, also poses a massive challenge for technological products. For customers, it may require reconsidering how early they need to shop and what specifications and products they are willing to live without. For businesses, it risks hurting revenue for the all-important Christmas sales season and cutting back on sales momentum for some of their newly launched products.

take Apple (AAPL), which is known for having a sophisticated global supply chain to manufacture its products. Introduced in September, the iPhone 13 runs on Apple’s own A15 Bionic chip, which powers some of its new flagship camera features and improved battery life. But it also depends on other companies for chips that drive certain features, such as monitors, power management, and USB connectivity.
Supply chain nightmares do what regulators and rivals cannot: Slow down Amazon speeds
In late October, Apple said chip shortages and manufacturing disruptions associated with Covid-19 reduced $ 6 billion from their revenue last quarter. It is also reportedly redistributing some of the chips that were originally planned for iPads to iPhones to help meet demand. But that means waiting times on iPads can get longer.
Tech companies such as Samsung (SSNLF) and Microsoft (MSFT) has cited supply chain constraints on recent earnings calls. Some chip manufacturers have warned that demand will exceed supply through at least 2022.

“We see a shortage across the board, but the premium devices – which require more chips for power management solutions, microcontrollers and certain features – will be particularly difficult to find,” said Gaurav Gupta, a vice president focusing on semiconductor industry at the market research firm Gartner.

From last week there were e.g. iPhone 13 and iPhone mini models were delivered at faster prices than theirs Pro counterparties.

Apple and Microsoft did not respond to a request for comment. Representatives of Google, Nintendo and Sony also did not respond to requests for comment.

Meanwhile, it’s even harder to find one of the newer game consoles – such as the NIntendo Switch OLED, PS5 and XBox series. All these products are sold out onand company websites. On Sony’s website, shoppers can register “for an opportunity to buy” a PS5 via a special invitation. Some retailers such as Walmart and Best Buy offer access to “restock events” for paying members of theirs subscription clubs. Amazon, which has not charged for early access to game consoles, lets customers sign up for text messages when they return to stock – before quickly selling out again.

Filomena Iovino, research analyst at technology intelligence firm ABI Research, said customers may have better luck getting certain products depending on where they live.

“Geographically, Apple knows its strongest markets for iPhone sales, and these will be the ones prioritized to receive new product shipments,” Iovino said. “This may result in lack of availability or delayed availability at lower levels, but should not affect the price.”

As a general rule, however, customers everywhere must be prepared to act early and be flexible.

“If anyone wants a tech gadget to provide for the holidays, buy it now,” Gupta added. “Some items may ship in December; some may be extended until January, depending on the product. The more you customize it, the harder it will be to purchase that gadget.”

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