Raspberry Pi CEO Eben Upton has announced his company's first-ever price increase, and it's all because of the global component shortages brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic currently affecting the tech and auto industries. While Raspberry Pi can still produce as many as 7 million units this year, which is the same as last year's, companies are buying up more components than before to ensure that they can build their products. As a result, Raspberry Pi Zero and the 2GB variant of Raspberry Pi 4 are in short supply.
To address the issue, the manufacturer is moving back the 2GB Raspberry Pi 4's price to $45. The model debuted at that price, but Raspberry Pi lowered it to $35 in 2020 to replace its 1GB counterpart that was discontinued completely. Upton said the price increase in components needed for the boards means selling the 2GB Pi 4 for $35 is no longer economically viable, so the company is temporarily bringing back its old price. It's also reintroducing the 1GB variant for $35 to give customers another choice.
Upton explained in the post that the issue will affect its products built on 40nm silicon the most. Since the company has to distribute components wisely, it has decided to prioritize Compute Module 3, Compute Module 3+ and Raspberry Pi 3B, and to deprioritize Raspberry Pi 3B+. It's now encouraging industrial users of the Raspberry Pi 3B+ to use the 1GB variant of Raspberry Pi 4 instead.
The CEO said those changes are temporary and that the changes in pricing aren't here to stay. "As global supply chain issues moderate, we’ll keep revisiting this issue, and we want to get pricing back to where it was as fast as we can," he wrote. That said, the company is expecting its supply chain issues to persist all throughout 2022.