Analysts are predicting motherboard and graphics card makers will be taking a hit for the entire first half of 2019 thanks to a downturn in the cryptocurrency mining realm, and shortages of Intel CPUs. Intel has had significant issues with its move to the 10nm process node and will see shortages of some of its current generation 14nm++ processors as well. Due to the processor shortages, motherboard makers will see fewer sales because enthusiasts and PC builders won't need the boards if there are no CPUs to plug into them.
Sources claim that inventory levels were up at Asustek, Gigabyte, and other motherboard and graphics card makers in Q3 2018. Increased inventory means less product shipped, pushing revenues for the biggest sales season of the year down sharply for the companies. Another factor that contributed to the slowdown in sales, according to the sources, include the high price for the new GPUs from NVIDIA. The sources also blamed insignificant performance upgrades for some on the slow down.
Asustek net earnings declined in Q3 2018 to the tune of 43% compared to the same quarter of the previous year ending at NT$3.34 billion ($107.95 million). MSI saw its net profits decline by 6.6% to NT $1.50 billion in Q3 2018. Gigabyte is expected to see shipments for 2018 fall to fewer than 12 million units from 12.6 million in 2017. Graphics card shipments from MSI are expected to drop to 3.65 million units for 2018, which is down a massive 1 million units compared to 2017.
The good news for consumers with graphics card and motherboard makers seeing profits slip is that this should mean lower prices. Manufacturers don't want all of that inventory sitting on warehouse shelves and are likely to slash prices to move the product. NAND prices are also falling thanks to the Intel shortage making this a good time for enthusiasts to start stocking up on hardware for their next build.