Intel is preparing to increase the prices of its CPUs and chips. Nikkei reports that later this year, the chipmaker will increase the prices of its flagship CPUs and a wide variety of other chips, including Wi-Fi and other connectivity chips. Intel has already notified its customers of the price increases and this is likely to lead to more price increases for PCs and laptops during the holiday season.
Nikkei reports that the price is not yet final, but that some chips could rise by 20 percent. Intel warned earlier this year that it was seeking price increases for certain chips due to ongoing inflation and rising costs of materials, shipping and labor. “In its Q1 earnings call, Intel indicated it would raise prices in certain segments of its business due to inflationary pressures,” an Intel spokesperson said in a statement to Nikkei. “The company has begun to inform customers about these changes.”
The price increases are expected to happen once PC shipments have gone through a major decline, and inflation is already impacting average PC sales prices. Gartner revealed this week that worldwide PC shipments are down nearly 13 percent this quarter. “This is the sharpest decline in nine years for the global PC market, driven by geopolitical, economic and supply chain challenges affecting all regional markets,” Gartner said in a press release.
As component shortages begin to ease, Gartner blames inflationary pressures and a “solid drop in demand for Chromebooks” on the PC’s decline. The PC market saw phenomenal growth during the first two years of the pandemic, but the mix of energy, fuel and food price increases and people spending less time at home has revived the PC market.
According to Gartner, the PC market in Europe, the Middle East and Africa saw an even bigger drop of 18 percent. “This is a major drop in overall volume after two years of very strong growth fueled by COVID-19 and renewed interest in consumer and education PCs,” said Mikako Kitagawa, research director at Gartner. “Closing or completely abandoning operations in Russia as a result of the war in Ukraine had an even greater impact on the PC market, as Russian PC shipments for leading PC vendors accounted for between 5-10 percent of total EMEA PC volume contributed.”
As the PC market falters and Intel gears up to increase CPU prices, the opposite is happening on the GPU side. The major GPU shortage ended last month, thanks in part to the ongoing crypto crash. Crypto miners are flooding the market with cards that are no longer profitable, and it means new GPUs are more readily available on the shelves. Nvidia has started bundling free games with some RTX 3080, 3080 Ti, 3090 and 3090 Ti cards. We’ve even seen a (temporary?) price drop of $400 for the RTX 3090 Ti, and even price drops for some RTX 3080 cards.
If you’re considering building a gaming PC or buying one that’s pre-built, now seems like an ideal time during the GPU price drops and ahead of the CPU price hikes. But we’re about to enter a new era of CPU and GPU upgrades, especially with Nvidia’s new 40-series GPUs reportedly set to arrive in the coming months. So if you really want the latest and greatest, it might be worth waiting to see what Nvidia, AMD and Intel have planned for later this year.