SSD/flash/memory shortage, day N+1

There has been a huge demand of SSD/Flash/memory components from a number of end users. Sadly not the day jobs customers … but enough to deplete the market of supply.

Watching basic economics at work is fascinating.

Supply is highly constrained, while demand is rising. Couple that with a (mis)expectation of continuous falling prices across the board leads to interesting conversations with customers.

We’ve tried to set expectations appropriately, but we’ve been bitten in the past by doing just this. That is, by being honest and up-front with our customers that some things will take more time to get, and cost more, we’ve watched customers go to different vendors, hear a different message, and then be screwed over as we weren’t being dishonest … while the other vendor was.

In another post, I said this was getting to me.

We’ve been advising customers placing orders 2+ months in advance for some specific sets of parts in very short supply. It does take some time for manufacturing to ramp up, and OEMs are in no hurry to flood a market and lower the effective purchase price (and their profits).

Yet, I am still seeing people think that parts are available with a quick phone call. For a large enough order (more than 1 or 2 systems worth), you need to get an allocation, and you need to get in queue for that allocation. That queue can be long. Other larger orders can and will bump you in queue. And the direct customers for the OEMs that bought all the product last time might just do it again. I’d call this highly likely. These aren’t the Dells, HPEs, etc. of the world. Go ahead and guess who might be doing this. And note that shortages in the broader market serve to underscore a portion of their message.

Many folks are building out their backlog from inventory, though their inventories aren’t deep, as the products age fast, and become obsolete in short time intervals. Many do just-in-time building. For those of us doing that, this is becoming painful at best.

Yeah, this is getting to me.

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