October 26, 2006 – PC manufacturers are now scrambling to overcome a shortage of microprocessors, DRAM, and chipsets, mainly due to demand for systems that can handle Microsoft’s forthcoming Vista operating system, according to a report in the Taiwan Economic News.
The shortage, suffered since mid-October, has heightened competition among Taiwan’s top notebook suppliers (Quanta Computer, Compal Electronics, Wistron, Inventec, and Asustek Computer), to meet Vista’s stated requirements of ~1GB, double the standard for Windows XP. Initial feedback from Vista beta users, however, indicates that performance gains are significant with up to 2GB of memory. The PC components shortage even has sent the chairman of top-four PC supplier Acer looking for supplies from US sources, according to the report.
The report notes that Intel is seeing the shortage of its chipsets and microprocessors and expects the problem to clear out sometime this quarter — but “insiders” note that Intel helped cause the problem in the first place by rolling out too many new products this year, creating extra competition for supplies.