Once again, disaster strikes at the heart of the supply chain as reports are only now emerging about another factory destroyed in a major fire on March 19th that forced yet another semiconductor (chip) fabrication plant (fab) off-line. The fire took out the first floor of the Renesas Electronics factory in Hitachinaka, Ibaraki Prefecture, Japan – just north of Tokyo, according to a report by the Nikkei.
Supply Chain Problems are Expanding into More Products
More evidence is emerging of the possibility of an economically significant impact from a stressed supply chain that has hit the global supply of integrated circuits (chips) hard. First felt in the automotive segment, now Samsung is warning that the global chip shortage is impacting smartphones and personal computers.
See more on the Samsung warning…[Read more…] about Samsung Warns Chip Shortage Now Impacting Mobile Phone & Computer Biz
Earthquakes & Snowstorms Hit an Already Stressed Supply Chain
Since Strata-gee began tracking the story of our stressed-to-the-brink supply chain last year, the situation has only become more dire. Not only has the pandemic caused a once-in-a-hundred-years impact on the supply chain, but adding to that whipsaw from the collapse of demand to then off-the-charts demand, we can now add fires, earthquakes, and snowstorms to the mix.
It all adds up to a concerning level of stress to our supply chain that will impact product availability in multiple product segments, including residential and commercial technology.
Mother Nature mauls the supply chain…[Read more…] about Let the Chips (Supply Chain) Fall Where They May
A global supply chain shortage of key semiconductors has hit automakers around the world hard, like the automatic braking solution on self-driving cars. The shortage is so severe that auto makers are literally being forced to close factories for weeks as they wait for their supply of chips. As the industry is trying to rebound from a tough 2020, this situation has become so painful, some manufacturers are turning to politicians – asking them to pressure chip manufacturers to prioritize shipments to the auto industry.
Can car makers force more supply to address the chip shortage?[Read more…] about Global Chip Shortage Auto-Brakes Automakers Hard
Famous New York Yankees catcher Yogi Berra once said, “Forecasting is very difficult, especially when it’s about the future.” Yet another wise saying from one of history’s most quoted sages. Even so, lately many regular Strata-gee readers (some of my favorite Strata-gists), have been asking me to do just exactly that – predict the future.
That is such a risky business…only a fool would take such a challenge.
See this fool’s forecast for 2021…[Read more…] about Forecasting What to Expect in 2021 When There are So Many Unknowables
Most manufacturers in Tech have been reluctant to discuss the impact on the supply chain – and on the availability of their key models – as a result of the recent Asahi Kasei Microdevices (AKM) factory fire in Japan. However, Sony – especially Sony Europe – has admitted to customers that it’s camera and video division, is “facing a severe shortage of key parts” for its compact cameras and video cameras. Although Sony did not specifically correlate their problem to the AKM situation, a large number of camera and photography media are saying that this is most likely the cause of the shortage to which Sony is referring.
See what Sony & other brands say about the AKM fire fallout…[Read more…] about AKM Fire Update: Sony Admits It Faces ‘Severe Shortage’ of Key Imaging Models
Massive AKM Factory Fire in Japan to Disrupt Global Supply of Critical Digital ICs
Just when you thought 2020 was almost over and the COVID calamity and its associated disasters were mostly behind us, a source tipped Strata-gee off to a major new disaster that will almost surely cause a significant disruption in the 2021 supply of those critical A/V products we all use/sell/and install every day. You may not be aware of this AKM fire story now, but we are all facing what will likely be another major supply chain headache in the near future.
Warning – your supply of key products is now threatened…[Read more…] about AKM Fire: 2020 was Almost Over, Then Disaster Struck Again
Strata-gee’s COVID-19 Impact on Tech Study Offers Insights on Early Pandemic Impact
This week, Strata-gee launched a survey designed to get a sense of the level of impact on Tech businesses by the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic now sweeping across the United States and the globe. Thinking that the timing of this survey was very early in the spread of the epidemic and likely to reveal a calm baseline reading, respondents surprised us with results that are fairly dramatic and showed that many are already feeling the impact.
See Strata-gee’s Survey: COVID-19 Impact on Tech…[Read more…] about Strata-gee Survey: Majority of All Tech Businesses Already Impacted by COVID-19
No Need to Panic Now, But Maybe Soon
I received a tip from a tech supplier here in the U.S. that the Coronavirus epidemic impacting China is a big problem getting bigger every day…and that our industry needs to think about – and prepare for – the impact on our supply chain. This week, Strata-gee surveyed several brands to learn their status on product supply…and what their perspective was on the near-term future impact of this epidemic taking place in China.