Friday, May 28, 2021

WXYZ, WDIV, and WPTV report on the chip shortage and its effects on autos and appliances

I told my readers to "Stay tuned" because "I might look at this issue from the perspective of local news media next." Since I describe my blog as being "about sustainability with a science fiction slant and a Detroit perspective" at its Facebook page and Detroit is the Motor City, I'm embedding reporting from Detroit television stations first, beginning with WXYZ's Auto dealers call chip shortage 'a hell of a follow up' to pandemic; issue spans across industries.

The global chip shortage will cost billions. Everybody from the shop floor assembly line to the showroom floor is adjusting.
As I wrote yesterday, "This entire story serves as another example of everything is connected to everything else and there is no free lunch; mess with some part of a system and the effects will move through all the connections at rates and sizes ranging from ripples to cascades." WXYZ's report added to the connections, including the Texas polar vortex blackout and local plant closures elsewhere contributing to the shortage of chips, local auto plant closures, and vehicles waiting for chips in parking lots. That the chip shortage is also affecting appliances concerns me, as my wife and I need a new dishwasher. We might have to wait just like Robert Kroeger, who WDIV interviewed in Computer chip shortage creating long wait times for pickup truck buyers.

A six month wait and counting? Yikes! That Kroeger bought his truck at Bob Maxey Ford in Howell makes this even more real for me, as I used to teach in Howell and have driven past the dealership. I wish him luck getting his truck. He'll need that and a lot of patience.

Follow over the jump for two videos from WPTV in Palm Beach, Florida about this story.

The first is Computer chip shortage cuts new vehicle production, sends used vehicle prices soaring.

A shortage of semiconductor chips is forcing automakers to cut production of new vehicles and sending the prices of used vehicles higher.
Other clips I've embedded both yesterday and today mentioned the spike in used car prices, but this is the most informative on that aspect of the issue I've seen so far.

Here's the more complete interview WPTV anchor Shannon Cake referred to at the end of the segment: FAU professor David Menachof discusses computer chip shortage in the auto industry.

FAU professor David Menachof talks about how the computer chip shortage is affecting prices and wait times in the new and used car market.
The more I look into this story, the worse it gets. The shortage could last another year or more, which might be longer than the pandemic itself. In the meantime, people are finding out the hard way how many of our things are now computerized. When "everything is connected to everything else" through computerization and "the internet of things," consumers find out "there is no free lunch" when it comes to technology increasing efficiency and convenience. That's definitely another story I can tell my students.

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