NAND and DRAM Shortages Expected to Bite Till 2018



/ 8 months ago

DRAM

Over the past couple of months, DRAM and NAND prices have started to inch their way up. The price increases are caused by higher than expected demand for flash memory. Simply put, there is too much demand for the supply to keep up. Unfortunately, it looks like there is no relief in sight this year. In fact, the latest reports suggest that the supply crisis will deepen as more product launches loom for later this year.

So far, the supply issue has largely been mitigated by stockpiling. Before the worst of the demand hit, many companies had stocked up on extra DRAM and NAND. However, those stockpiles are starting to run out. Demand is also on the rise with the iPhone 8 launch expected to cause more stress as well. Companies like LG have pushed up their purchases earlier in the quarter to ensure they can get an adequate supply.

Worst time to buy NAND and DRAM

Unfortunately, with DRAM and NAND, demand is only ever going to go up. More and more devices offer copious amounts of RAM and SSD capacities are on the rise. At the same time, supply is only going to grow slowly as new fabs come online. However, spinning up a fab is expensive and time-consuming. With this in mind, it looks like it will be quite a while before prices come down.

Along with the crazy GPU mining craze, the cost of a PC is inching higher and higher. This is especially true for custom built machines. While large OEMs have the leverage and scale to keep prices low, the lower volume custom market is at a disadvantage. Hopefully, the several fabs slated to come online in 2018 will provide some relief.


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