Despite a much-anticipated launch for Skylake within the next two weeks, Intel looks to be in trouble on the supply side. According to multiple sources, supply for the i7 6700K and i5 6600K is severely limited and the initial stock is not expected to last long. Several unnamed Taiwanese firms also have had issues in supplying reviewers with Skylake chips to pair with their launch motherboard reviews.
Marketing director Anton Nilsson for Swedish retailer Webhallen had this to say on the supply situation:
We have a small number of processors and motherboards coming. They confirmed deliveries will not be enough for a whole week, rather a few days. Unfortunately, it also seems that those of our PC series most interesting motherboard is further delayed about a month.
So basically, even though Intel is only launching two chips at first, supply might as well be so limited, Intel may have well delayed the launch by a month. The fact that Intel is only launching two chips first also suggests that Intel knew this going in and was already trying to mitigate the issue. It’s important to note that while Intel may have low supply relative to demand, it doesn’t mean they aren’t producing a ton of chips, just that it’s not able to satisfy demand.
Of all the recent process nodes, 14nm has given Intel the most trouble, causing desktop Broadwell to be delayed by nearly a year and even then, the chips were vaporware for quite a while after launch. If Skylake continues this trend despite 14nm production already being ramped up for more than a year, yields must have been really bad when Intel first started it. With delays for 10nm also being built into Intel’s roadmap, we can only hope that Skylake will be worth the wait.
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