The 2020-21 Computer Shortage

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In the history of computers, it is pretty safe to say that the 2020-2021 GPU and CPU shortage is one of the worst in modern history. Two of the three big tech companies, AMD and Nvidia, have been hit hard by the shortages of Silicon and the high demand of their products, namely the RTX 30## and AMD Ryzen 5000 Family of Products.

Although the Ryzen products have returned back to normal, with the ability to buy them, Nvidia GPUs have been hit the worst, with stock being nearly impossible to find in pretty much every country. This had happened due to the shortages in Silicon since it was not able to produce due to the pandemic, and the need for Computers due to the pandemic, that is why many computer parts were unable to be found for almost 6 months from today. Another reason why this situation isn’t helping is because of the 3 types of people; Cyrptominers, Scalpers, and Bots.

Bots are well, bots that try to steal computer hardware. Their job is to buy up massive amounts of hardware, thus nobody else can get them, and then scalp them on EBay. The reason they are different from Scalpers is because, although Scalpers are trying to make the most money and often have the products, some bots do not even have the product, meaning you get scammed out of more money that MSRP (Manufacturer Suggested Retail Prices)

There are 2 types of scalpers. The first is the kind that controls the bots. These are the people that have the numerous bots that try to steal all the products. The second type of scalper is the type who does not have bots, but instead takes the very little amount of products left after bots, and doesn’t even use them, instead scalping them for an even higher markup. Another much worse example of a scalper is somebody who is selling printout pictures of products, something that only the keen eyed among us would realise.

Finally, we have crypto mining. Aside from being bad for the environment, due to the fact that it required 2 to 3 times the power of a computer used for gaming, and most of the energy coming from Fossil Fuels, it is also horrible for the GPU’s. This is because, to gain a larger profit, Cyrptominers often use 7 to 8 times more GPU’s to maximise output. Since the new graphics cards have a much larger hash rate, they have become a target for Cyrptominers.

Many people now have become dissatisfied with companies’ handling of this shortage. This is due to the fact that NViDIA keeps releasing new products. While AMD did have a shortage at times, that situation is, although still spotty, much better now. Graphics Cards, however, are much harder to get as many people need them, and NViDIA has taken a lot of flak for not helping, and releasing new products such as the RTX 3080/70 TI on May 31, 2021.

Another reason people are angry is because the shortage has been happening for half a year now. It’s crazy to believe that November is half a year ago, but here we are, and the situation is, quite frankly, not better.