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In brief: Now that graphics card prices are finally starting to fall, will laptops follow the same trend? Apparently not, according to a new report. In fact, the devices could see their selling points increase during the second half of the year due to several all-too familiar factors.
DigiTimes Asia (via NotebookCheck) writes that the Covid-19 lockdowns in China and Russia's invasion of Ukraine have led to increased manufacturing costs, supply chain issues, and logistical problems for laptop makers. As such, they are "mulling raising their prices to reflect rising logistics and other costs in the second half of 2022."
A rise in the number of Covid-19 cases in Shenzhen, China, in March resulted in all businesses except those that supply food, fuel, and other necessities ordered to close or work from home. This included Apple supplier Foxconn, though it was able to restart work a week later using a "closed-loop" management process that essentially sees employees living at the facilities during the lockdown.
April saw renewed, harsher restrictions put in place in Shanghai and Kunshan, impacting manufacturers that supply the likes of Apple, Dell, and Tesla.
Additionally, the Russian invasion of Ukraine has affected half the world's neon production and inflated energy prices.
All of which has led to supply chain sources from the notebook ODM and OEM industry warning of laptop price rises in the second half of the year. Ironically, this comes soon after laptop makers were reportedly set to decrease prices due to waning demand as much of the world returned to work and most lockdowns ended.
While laptops could soon become more expensive, graphics cards are heading in the opposite direction. We recently heard that the latest from Nvidia and AMD are now within 12% of their MSRP in Europe, and our own research shows eBay GPU prices fell again, by around 15%, over the last four weeks.