Raspberry Pi products have never had a price increase in their history until now.
Ebon Upton, the CEO of Raspberry Pi Trading, has announced that the 2GB Raspberry Pi 4 will increase from $35 to $45, due in part to the high demand and short supply of necessary components. Upton states, however, that this will only be temporary.
What's Behind the Change?
Upton explains that the price increase is a result of COVID-19 affecting global supply chains around the world, with many companies rushing to buy as much of the supply as they can. In the electronics industry, that has resulted in a short supply of semiconductors. For this reason, there is a shortage of the Raspberry Pi Zero and the 2GB Raspberry Pi 4.
It was only in February 2020 that the company lowered the price of the 2GB Raspberry Pi 4 to $35, and discontinued the 1GB variant which had previously held the signature price.
1GB Variant Returns
Because of the shortages, however, a decision has been made to bring back the 1GB variant, and return the 2GB Raspberry Pi to its former price of $45. Due to the supply issues, the company says that it is not economically feasible to sell the 2GB variant at the lower price.
In the news release published on the Raspberry Pi website, Upton writes that for people using this product, including for business, “This provides a degree of choice: less memory at the same price; or the same memory at a higher price.”
The issue with supply chains is foreseen to ease eventually, which is why these changes are temporary. However, the issues are expected to continue through to 2022 and as a result, Upton has issued key advice relating to Raspberry Pi 3B+.
With a limited stock of 40nm silicon, priority has been given to Compute Module 3, Compute Module 3+, and Raspberry Pi 3B.
Raspberry Pi 3B+ on the other hand has been deprioritized, owing to the lower migration cost of this model. As such, for industrial and embedded users of Raspberry Pi 3B+ who want to optimize availability in 2022, Upton advises you to begin migrating your designs to the 1GB Raspberry Pi 4.
While not ideal, the measures taken by Raspberry Pi Trading will still result in about 7 million units being made in 2021, the same number as in 2020, while the company assures that the price changes are only temporary.
Overall, the heightened demand has resulted in just one price increase, for the 2GB Raspberry Pi 4. The wise allocation of materials across the remainder of the products has kept everything else the same, with the addition of the 1GB variant making a comeback.