President Biden to address global semiconductor shortage affecting Xbox Series X|S and others

Xbox Series X Internals
Xbox Series X Internals (Image credit: Microsoft)

What you need to know

  • The Xbox Series X|S have both been afflicted by an ongoing semiconductor supply shortage worldwide.
  • The shortage makes it difficult for Microsoft, Sony, NVIDIA, car manufacturers, and many more to keep up with demand.
  • President Biden is reportedly planning to sign an executive order to review and investigate various supply chains and sectors.
  • The plan is to prevent future semiconductor shortages from happening by diversifying domestic supply chains and production.

While the Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S are both impressive consoles, they have been notoriously difficult to find. Increased demand due to the ongoing pandemic is a crucial component, but the most significant factor in supply issues for Xbox Series X|S has been a global semiconductor shortage affecting many companies and industries around the world. AMD's CEO indicated that these shortages won't end any time soon, leaving many potential buyers without their console.

According to a report from Reuters, President Biden has met with Congressman to discuss signing an executive order addressing this global chip shortage. While the executive order would likely do little to fix the current issues plaguing Microsoft, Sony, NVIDIA, AMD, and even car manufacturers like Ford, it would work to prevent a shortage like this from happening in the future.

The executive order would launch a 100-day review of semiconductor supply chains, batteries for electric vehicles, rare minerals, and pharmaceuticals. There would also be six broader sector reviews aimed at investigating and fixing issues with defense, public health, communications technology, transportation, energy, and food production.

The end goal of this executive order is to diversify America's supply chains and production, and to rely less on importing key goods into the country.

For now, it's still hard to get your hands on an Xbox Series X|S. Fortunately, we keep close track of where to buy the Xbox Series X|S, so you can jump on opportunities to purchase Microsoft's elusive next-gen consoles the moment they become available.

Zachary Boddy
Staff Writer

Zachary Boddy (They / Them) is a Staff Writer for Windows Central, primarily focused on covering the latest news in tech and gaming, the best Xbox and PC games, and the most interesting Windows and Xbox hardware. They have been gaming and writing for most of their life starting with the original Xbox, and started out as a freelancer for Windows Central and its sister sites in 2019. Now a full-fledged Staff Writer, Zachary has expanded from only writing about all things Minecraft to covering practically everything on which Windows Central is an expert, especially when it comes to Microsoft. You can find Zachary on Twitter @BoddyZachary.

  • Unless the net result of the executive order is the prohibitiom of economic shutdowns due to pandemics, I'm not sure what they are hoping to accomplish. That is why there is a shortage and it will take time for that to sort itself out, regardless of where the chips are made.
  • The Exec Order is simply a review of current state. In an of itself, it doesn't fix anything. But it's hard to fix things if you don't actually understand where all the gaps are. It's not at simple as Step 1. Make chip. Step 2. Install chip.
  • Step one: build semiconductor foundry.
    Step two: regularly invest in developing better production processes. TMSC did both.
    Intel slacked on step two.
    It would help if there were more local players actively competing.
  • Executive orders can't magically change supply and demand for the better. This is ridiculous and if passed would just be a waste of taxpayer money.
  • You have to start somewhere. The fact remains that U.S. semiconductor manufacturing (among other sectors) has fallen behind compared to the competition, principally in Taiwan. This is a simple fact, and it was the case pre-pandemic. Covid just exposed it and made it more obvious. Nearly all AMD, Qualcomm and Apple's core chips are made in Taiwan, when their largest market is here in the U.S. They need to seriously re-invest significantly in local semiconductor manufacturing.
  • Good to see someone who puts thoughts into their comments and just doesn't react.
  • Companies need to reinvest. And the only way to do that is to make doing business in America more appealing than doing business in other countries. Right now our tax on large business is much higher than other countries. Executive order is not going to change this. This and the entire supply chain issue where we need not just chip manufacturing facilities here, but also mining facilities for silicon, which we do have an abundance of, but has slowed down to a crawl due to restrictions compared to other countries as well. We have spent the last four years trying to get these types of jobs back to America and were on the right path, but the tax the giant companies into oblivion thought process going on nowadays is just going to push them away from manufacturing in America. But that other guy is right, I know nothing and am just jumping to conclusions over no prior knowledge whatsoever.
  • "Executive order is not going to change this". It won't because the EO is nothing more than study to better understand current state of affairs. Unless your position is that fact finding is in itself a waste of money, your opinions expressed here would be vetted out by this EO. Why is that bad?
  • Because it's smoke and mirrors pretending to do something?
    There is no need for a study (at great expense, as usual) to tell us what we already know.
  • Ah you're a Trump person, it puts your nonsensical comments into perspective.
  • Your comment makes absolutely no sense. This review is for the future, no one expects Biden to magically increase capacity right now.
  • Well, clearly the article's author is expecting a magical increase: "President Biden to address global semiconductor shortage affecting Xbox Series X|S and others"
  • stop me if you've heard this one before: "I'm from the government, and I'm here to help."
  • Tell that to the people of Texas without water right now.
  • "I'm from ERCOT and I'm here to help." (If you don't know, that's the private company that controls the Texas power grid) This quote suggests that government is completely useless so taking that to it's logical end takes us on anarchy ...which also isn't helpful.
  • Start by putting a large environmental tax on the Cryptomining industry
  • This can only end badly. The last thing anybody should want is government meddling. They must smell money to be stolen.
  • Chips run everything. So if everything is dependent upon one country, America is at their mercy. This is literally a matter of national security.
  • Which means that when China moves on Taiwan, the US will absolutely have to step in.
    Something this "study" will do nothing about.
  • On top of all that you have $calpers holding Next-Gen (Current-Gen now) consoles at ransom.
  • No costly 100 day review needed. Just pass a bill to subsidize US companies like AMD to refit and reopen their US fabrication facilities. The problem is the US now solely relies on Chinese production facilities. The US government can't motivate foreign companies to move production the United States, but they certainly can help US companies move a portion of production to domestic facilities. That way, even when borders are closed in a pandemic, some production remains.
  • You are laboring under the illusion that there is something called "A US Company".
    There are no "US Companies", only multi-national organizations that chase the lowest production costs to whatever location they can.
    Capital is global, as is labor, and production facilities. They seek the lowest costs. Period.
    Intel makes most of their chips in Indonesia and Malaysia and Guatemala and other South American countries (just look at them, it's printed right on them.)
    IBM sold off their chip foundries when they no longer had a 300% profit margin.
    Texas Instruments was broken up and sold off decades ago. As was Fairchild Semiconductor, Analog Devices, etc.,
    Even companies like 3M used to make chips here. No more. There IS NO real US Semiconductor Manufacturing business anymore. Sure Intel keeps a few factories running, but that is also mostly for tax purposes and high-profit ASICs.
    Companies like AMD and Nvidia and Intel and Apple only have headquarters in the US for Tax Purposes (and the convenience of their executives.)
    They have no loyalties to anyone, just to their current stock prices.
    The Chinese followed the old Vladimir Lenin statement: "The Capitalists will sell us the rope with which we will hang them." and now they control our supply chains, and they know it.
    It will take DECADES to build new factories, and changes in environmental laws (note which countries Intel manufactures most of it's chips in. That is not a coincidence that they ALL have lax environmental laws. Chip-making is a very dirty business requiring large amounts of water, power, and it produces tons of toxic waste.) It also takes MASSIVE Capital Investments. A new chip fab costs an average of $4-6 Billion to build and get into production.
  • If you thought it was hard to get a GPU before....... 🙄
  • he's the right president for our time of gaming console shortages