Raspberry Pi: Why They’re So Hard To Buy Now And What To Do About It?

If you haven’t been able to buy a Raspberry Pi online yet, you’re not alone. The British tech company and its resellers are cracking under the pressure of small computer backlogs, and supply can’t keep up with demand.

Raspberry Pi chief Eben Upton has said the company is struggling to meet demand for many of its products, but has outlined how it works to deliver devices despite supply constraints.

“As you will have noticed, it can be difficult to buy a Raspberry Pi unit from stock right now,” he says in a blog post.

Upton and the company have worked hard to ship Pi products to customers despite multiple challenges in the supply chain. It also rolls out about 500,000 Pi computers each month from its factory in Wales.

“We have consistently been able to build about half a million of our single-board computers and Compute Module products each month. As we mentioned in October, the 28nm BCM2711 part used on Raspberry Pi 4 and Compute Module 4 is more readily available than the 40nm parts used on our older products,” says Upton.

But Upton insists that Raspberry Pi’s supply problems are as much related to increased demand as the “supply shock” that resulted in “out of stock” messages consumers see on all Pi resellers’ e-commerce sites.

“Demand for Raspberry Pi products increased sharply from early 2021, and supply constraints have prevented us from meeting this demand, with the result that we now have significant backlogs for almost all products. In turn, our many resellers have own backlogs, which they fill when they receive inventory from us,” says Upton.

These backlogs absorb Raspberry Pi units as quickly as the company can produce them, with the result that little of that production volume is immediately available on reseller websites.

Where units appear, bots often attempt to scalp inventory which is then resold at higher prices elsewhere. Many approved resellers have implemented single-unit limits to combat this, with Adafruit and others going further and enforcing two-factor authentication. route,” he said.

Unfortunately, for the average consumer of Pi products looking to build home projects, Upton says the company prioritizes commercial and industrial customers.

“We are well aware that people’s livelihoods are at stake. There is currently enough supply to meet the needs of those customers,” said Upton.

Upton urges customers to avoid scalpers and buy only through approved resellers, who sell Pi products at an agreed price.

Upton says the Pi 400 computer with a keyboard is readily available because the company has reserved BCM2711 silicon stock for it. The microcontroller Pi Pico, based on the RP2040 in-house chip, is also in stock.

Until the pandemic, hardware prices had been falling continuously. But in October 2021, Raspberry Pi, which makes computer models that cost between $70 and 70 cents, was forced to raise its prices for the first time since its inception in 2012.

The global chip shortage and supply chain problems have affected many companies, from Apple to Tesla and Ford.


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