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Looking for a gift for the video gamer in your family? Good luck.

Savannah Maher Dec 9, 2021
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The computer chip shortage means that popular gaming consoles, like Sony’s PlayStation 5, may be hard to come by well into next year. Charly Triballeau/AFP via Getty Images

Looking for a gift for the video gamer in your family? Good luck.

Savannah Maher Dec 9, 2021
Heard on:
The computer chip shortage means that popular gaming consoles, like Sony’s PlayStation 5, may be hard to come by well into next year. Charly Triballeau/AFP via Getty Images
HTML EMBED:
COPY

It’s often tough for shoppers to get their hands on the hottest new video game consoles ahead of the holidays.

But this year’s crunch is especially bad, with rising demand continuing to swamp supply. It’s one more sector struggling with the semiconductor chip shortage.

Since Sony’s PlayStation 5 debuted last year, Russell Massey said he’s tried in vain to score one as a gift for his 18-year-old son.

“We’re talking birthday present, high school graduation present, going-away-to-college present, I mean, you name it,” he said.

Massey keeps an eye on social media accounts that post alerts about PS5 drops from online sellers. But by the time he clicks ‘add to cart,’ “you know within like two seconds it’s sold out. I feel like I’m just getting beat out by the bots.”

Bots probably do have something to do with it, according to Alla Valente, a supply chain analyst with Forrester.

But there’s also a simple supply and demand problem. There’s been a pandemic boom in gaming and, Valente said, a global shortage in computer chips and other tech hardware.

“When everyone goes back to work and we’re not playing as much, that’s when we’ll start seeing it ease up,” Valente said.

Valente said she expects the gaming console shortage to stretch well into 2022.

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