Chip shortage is hurting Intel laptop sales now, too

Technology giant reports lower third-quarter earnings.

Credit: Dreamstime

Intel has said that its PC business was hurt by the worldwide chip shortage, as its customers weren't able to sell as many laptops using its parts as they would have liked.

Intel reported its third-quarter 2021 earnings on Thursday, with both profits and revenue rising compared to a year ago. The key numbers lay in the vendor's Client Computing Group, however, where the company reports sales of processors and chipsets designed for laptop and desktop PCs. CCG revenue fell two per cent to $9.7 billion compared to a year ago, Intel said.

Intel explained the reasons for the shortfall in straightforward terms: The Client Computing Group (CCG) was down due to lower notebook volumes due to industry-wide component shortages, and on lower adjacent revenue, partially offset by higher average selling prices (ASPs) and strength in desktop, Intel said.

Chip shortages have been the story of 2020 and much of 2021, affecting both the automotive industry as well as the processor industry. To date, those impacts have been largely felt within the GPU industry, as a combination of tight supply and scalping have driven prices up and made graphics cards and finished PCs hard to come by. Intel did not mention specifically which components were hurting sales, however.

Intel said that it's currently shipping its upcoming Alder Lake processor, which the company is expected to more formally disclose soon. Intel shipped over one million units of its Ice Lake processor to date, the company said, and its Tiger Lake notebook processor was the fastest to ramp in the company's history. 

Intel said that Alchemist, its first discrete GPU for gaming, is still scheduled to be on shelves in the first quarter on 2022.

Intel didn't disclose any more information in advance of its earnings call, which was to take place later on Thursday. 

Otherwise, Intel reported $6.8 billion in net income (up 60 per cent year over year) on $19.2B revenue, which was up five per cent from a year ago. Intel's outlook for the fourth quarter projects $19.2 billion in revenue, which would be flat compared with the current quarter and also up five per cent compared to a year ago.

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Mark Hachman

Mark Hachman

PC World
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