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The 10 Biggest Semiconductor News Stories Of 2021 (So Far)

The global chip shortage is easily the biggest story of the semiconductor industry this year, but there have been plenty of other major developments, including new product reveals, market share shakeups, mergers and acquisitions, new strategies, reorganizations and a new CEO for one of the most critical semiconductor companies in the industry.

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1. The Global Chip Shortage Wreaks Havoc On Multiple Industries

There has been no story more consequential in the semiconductor industry than the global chip shortage, which has impacted multiple industries, including IT and automotive. This and the United States’ low chip manufacturing output relative to Asian countries has prompted companies and elected officials there to push for subsidies to build new factories in the country.

Every major chipmaker, including Intel, AMD and Nvidia, have experienced shortages of their products. This has not only constrained the growth of the chipmakers themselves, even as they report record revenues, but also their customers. For instance, Apple recently said it expects a slowdown in revenue growth due to increased supply constraints while Microsoft partially blamed a drop in Surface sales on supply chain issues. Auto manufacturers, in the meantime, have had to temporarily halt production.

Among the reasons for the global chip shortage: sustained demand for a variety of electronics, including PCs and video game consoles; multiple companies competing for capacity at chip manufacturers like TSMC; and lasting effects from former President Trump’s trade war with China that barred companies with U.S. ties from making chips there.

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