Server IC shortage worsens

Aaron Lee, Taipei; Joseph Tsai, DIGITIMES Asia 0

Shortages of server ICs continue to worsen, which may constrain server ODMs' shipment growth in the third quarter, according to industry sources.

The sources pointed out that the delivery lead time of critical chips for servers has already extended to 52 weeks, while that of other ICs is more than 70 weeks. The short supply is unlikely to ease until the fourth quarter of 2021 or the first quarter of 2022.

Switches for serves are also in tight supply, due to shortages of ICs and networking chips, while global logistics is also being hit by slow shipment processing at ports worldwide.

Many cloud computing datacenter operators have started procuring components directly from suppliers, but are also facing difficulty securing sufficient supplies.

First-tier server motherboard maker Inventec pointed out that it has been unable to satisfy all its orders because of component shortages. Clients procuring components directly by themselves is only having limited help in boosting Inventec's shipments. Inventec expects its double-digit sequential shipment growth target for the third quarter to heavily depend on the status of component supply.

Supply of server CPUs from Intel and AMD has also turned tight recently, said Inventec.

Mitac Computing Technology has experienced IC shortages since early 2021 and is currently seeing its supply 20-30% short of demand. The company expects its shipments to only grow by less than 10% on year in 2021, despite staggering increases in orders received from clients in the US and China.

Wiwynn has been undermined the most by the shortage of switches, as most of its orders are rack server systems, but the problem is unlikely to ease this year, the sources said.