We have been saying it for over 3 months now, everyone who follows us daily was warned, and now, after the negotiation of prices at the beginning of the year, there will be lamentations for, hopefully, the least of it. The latest report on DRAM memory prices shows a rather bleak outlook for consumers, as all types of DRAM memory will experience a price increase in the first quarter of 2024, and in some cases, quite noticeably.
As the saying goes, “forewarned is forearmed.” Well, it won’t be for a lack of warnings, but since we know you want to understand what the DRAM industry faces in 2024, we advise you to sit down and have a calming tea if you’re nervous because the situation looks “very ugly” indeed.
DRAM memory and the rise in PC prices for Q1 2024
It is, together with laptops, the sector that undoubtedly affects us the most, and it is where we will begin. The report points to an almost meteoric rise in prices. To be more specific, the estimate is between a +10% and +15% increase, only in the first quarter of 2024. The major problem lies in the uncertainty here.
Many companies and users may, or may not, buy DDR4 for this year, taking advantage of it still being cheaper and there still being desktop CPU launches with that support. But at the same time, the industry is rapidly shifting to DDR5, leaving the exact moment of change in production up in the air.
In any case, neither DDR4 nor DDR5 have the prices that the industry considers correct, mainly because they remain low, so we can expect even more increases in the next negotiation. In servers, to mention them briefly, the situation is quite similar, with increases in the same percentage ranges, but they could be lower, around +8% and +13%, mainly because DDR4 is still being purchased in larger volumes than DDR5.
Smartphones and graphics cards, how will this new increase affect them?
Hold onto your seat if you were thinking of buying a new phone this year. And that’s because there is tension in the market that benefits manufacturers, but why exactly? The answer has a name: uncertainty.
Apple is not driving the market, Google has already fulfilled its quota, and Samsung seems to have lost its main holiday sales. The buyer might want to wait until later to purchase devices with the same SoC at a lower price, so everything seems to be concentrating on mid-range devices this time.
This fact makes manufacturers not increase production because they don’t see clearly how the buyer will react, and therefore, they’re walking on a knife’s edge with supply and demand, which means that the price will increase more than in a stable sector with somewhat consolidated forecasts. For this reason, increases of between +18% and +23% are mentioned for Q1 2024, a price increase of almost a quarter of its value.
Regarding graphics cards, other factors come into play. The demand is solid, especially for 16GB GDDR6, and it seems that the market does not see a problem with a price increase for this reason, which is curious when looking at the number of units sold compared to other years.
It’s clear that they’re selling fewer units, but at a higher price, and Intel, AMD, and NVIDIA are doing well because of it. Therefore, the expectation is an increase of between +10% and +15% for Q1 2024. Thus, to conclude, this leaves an average of between a +13% and +18% increase in DRAM prices, in general, if all sectors are combined.
The post Are you prepared for the surge in DRAM memory prices? PCs, servers, mobiles, and graphics cards will be more expensive first appeared on El Chapuzas Informático.