As a leading USB flash drive supplier in South Africa we would like to share some information about the current shortage of low capacity USB chip-sets for promotional USB flash drives.
In the past few years, with the rapid development of portable technology, tablets, smartphones, portable speakers and other portable digital products are becoming more and more mainstream worldwide. Doing so, the demand for chip-sets for these products has considerably increased, and this affected our industry a lot.
Most of the above mentioned products, however, use only 8GB or 8GB + chips. Following this trend, the branded chip manufacturers such as Samsung, Toshiba, Micron, Hynix and Intel reduced or even stopped the production of the chips with smaller capacity.
This has created a short supply of below 2GB capacity chips causing them to be traded at abnormally high prices. (Chip sets are traded as Exchange Traded Commodities)
This trend has in turn pushed up the prices for the finished USB flash drive to a level where the sales price of a less than 2GB drive might be more than a 4GB flash drive.
Besides this fact, the supply of 2GB below chips is currently very unstable, which will affect the lead time for the finished product as well.
With this in mind, we are likely to see that USB memory sticks of less than 4 GB will completely disappear from the market in the next few years.
The positive news however is, that the market prices of the bigger, 8GB and up, chip-sets are coming down constantly over the long term.
We will obviously keep our customers up to date about this trend, and offer only the best alternative, but it might be good to know if you are on the lookout for promotional USB’s as some companies will still want to get rid of stock of lower capacity flash drives!