It's no secret that Coronavirus is affecting the tech industry (opens in new tab). According to a DigiTimes (opens in new tab) report Tuesday, that also includes China's PC building (opens in new tab) industry, namely motherboards and graphics cards (opens in new tab), which are reportedly already seeing a drop in local demand.
The report cites unnamed "sources from the upstream supply chain" and says that vendors like Asus and Gigabyte, which see most of its GPU and mobo products sent to China, may see shipments drop further than originally expected in Q1. Gigabyte is said to have shipped fewer than 10 million motherboards in 2019.
The "significantly" lower demand reportedly stems from local consumers avoiding public places, including cafés and physical stores. Meanwhile, many local services in China, such as delivery services, have been suspended, meaning that online shopping for hardware will also come to a slowdown. And while Chinese residents have other things to worry about besides updating their rig, we suspect that demand won't come to a complete halt. After all, those stuck at home may be itching for a more powerful entertainment system.
DigiTimes also claimed that this decrease in PC hardware demand has "greatly eased" pressure on Intel regarding its CPU shortage. It added that this could reduce AMD's opportunity for market penetration (opens in new tab). But keep in mind, there was more driving consumers to AMD products besides Intel's shortage, including lower price points.
DRAMeXchange, on the other hand, recently said that it doesn't expect the Coronavirus to affect memory supplies (opens in new tab), despite the closure of many factories.
1. Don't catch the virus.Solution: Avoid physical contact with others. Stay home!
2. While alone (with family) at home, get food and supplies to avoid starvation.
Solution: Order online!
Status: Reduced delivery service and possibly also poor shopping experience due to old crappy hardware.
3. Keep sane while at home, in spite of having little contact with others.
Solution: Use computer to distract the mind and keep in touch with other people.
Status: Old computer prevents full pleasure.
4. Upgrade computer!
So if we assume even half of China's 1.36 billion people become infected and 3% of them die, that's still somewhere around 20,400,000 deaths. You want to tell me that YOU are feeling ok with those numbers now if it's possible YOU might be among those numbers? I didn't think so. I doubt those people do either.
The outbreak is a serious concern, and chances are high that it may result in at least tens of thousands of fatalities, but expecting tens of millions is probably jumping the gun a bit, as is assuming people are going to be huddled in their homes with no interest in using their computers or other forms of entertainment.
Yes. If I'm using my home PC more, I'm even more likely to notice how slow it is, and want to upgrade it.
The only real factor countering that would be loss of income, if my job were something I couldn't do from home.
Remaining in a heightened state of anxiety, for prolonged periods of time, is unnatural and unhealthy. It's not as if there's a zombie apocalypse, outside, a hot war, or even ebola - just a bad virus that you'd rather avoid.
Sure, you need to do some planning around when the designated person in your household will go out and get food & supplies, but unless someone in your family is sick, I don't really see what else would consume someone's attention to such a degree that it would completely displace any and all thoughts of upgrades, for PC users.
Getting back to the original story, I'm sure the depressed demand for PC upgrades is also somewhat due to the extended holiday break. Hourly employees won't be getting paid for that extra time off.
Others could generally be concerned about the economic impact and just holding off on discretionary spending. China's economy has already been slowing, over the past year or so.
Once it gets into developing or war-torn countries, it will explode like wildfire. And the fatality rate is worse than recent flu viruses. Fortunately, it's not as high as SARS (which is a closely-related corona virus), nor is it nearly as contagious as measles.
I don't know where you're getting your information from, and I'm no scientist or doctor, but from what I'm reading and hearing, that is not just wrong, but seriously, lost in the middle of the rainforest type wrong.
Obviously, it is still early to tell a lot of things with any certainty, but with 28,018 people "officially" infected in just over a month and "officially" 583 of them dead which is about a 2.1% death rate (Compared to a 0.51% rate for seasonal influenza), and the numbers having quadrupled over the last SIX days, the LAST thing in the world I'd be worried about right now is whether or not I could get somebody to deliver a motherboard or graphics card to me or not especially when there is a lack of water, food, medicine, information and other critical services, not to mention a very real fear of whether or not I might die since a lot of other people actually, are.
Even people in other countries where there are no related deaths yet have these fears, so you can imagine what it's like being in a country where tens of thousands of people are infected and almost six hundred have already died from it. I think the overwhelming majority of people are by FAR not taking this as seriously as they ought to be. Especially considering that with a minor mutation or two, this could easily go from a low to high mortality rate given the right circumstances.