Raspberry Pi director Eben Upton said his company is just beginning to recover from two years of “supply chain hell,” so fans shouldn’t expect a Raspberry Pi 4 successor next year.
Upton told ExplainingComputers this week that, due to the ongoing supply chain recovery, the Raspberry Pi may not be releasing the Raspberry Pi 5 in 2023.
“So I think don’t expect the Pi 5 next year. Next year is a year of recovery,” Upton said.
Lately, it’s been hard to find sought-after single-tablets, even though the Upton last week told Pi . fans that it may reserve “over a hundred thousand” units of Zero W, Pi 3A+, and 2GB and 4GB variants of the Raspberry Pi 4 for unit sale before the holiday season.
Upton said the company still has a large backlog of orders for commercial customers. It needs to tackle the backlog in addition to the inventory recovery challenge with resellers serving individual developers.
Upton says Zero and Zero W will be more available than before, while commercial demand for the Pi 3A+ is less. The Pi 4 will return to availability eventually, which is likely to happen sometime around the end of Q3 2023.
“The chip allocation we have received for next year means that by the end of the third quarter, the channel should have recovered to a balanced reserve level, with hundreds of thousands of units available at any given time,” he said. any”.
As for the Pi 5 question, Upton noted that supply chain issues caused by the pandemic are not just slowing down the Raspberry Pi, but everyone.
“So taking a year before thinking about introducing it, taking a year to fix what happened to us all, is commendable,” Upton argues. But he notes that not introducing the Pi 5 in 2023 would make the Pi 4, launched in June 2019, the longest-running Pi platform to date, despite numerous improvements over time. .
Defending the decision not to target 2023 for the Pi 5, he also pointed out that launching the Pi 5 could jeopardize the recall of Pi 4 supplies, even though the Pi 5 could be manufactured. on another process node. In addition, it can cause the Pi 5 launch to go wrong.
Provides 28nm BCM2711 components used on Raspberry Pi 4 and 4 . Compute Module hold firm in the early stages of global chip shortage and it has stocked up on BCM2711 silicon supplies for its new Raspberry Pi 400. It is struggling with the 40nm parts used on its older products.
“It would really be a disaster if we tried to introduce some kind of Raspberry Pi 5 product… and it couldn’t develop properly because of some limitations; or if we introduced some Raspberry Pi 5 product and it somehow corroded some element of the supply chain,” Upton said.
“There’s an assumption with the Raspberry Pi 5 that you’re going to need to be on a new process node. So you could say, ‘How did that eat away at the current wafer supply on 28 or 40nm? But you must remember these deficiencies are not all about one circuit.
“The other thing that’s going to be catastrophic is if we find out that restoring a Pi 4 or restoring a Pi 3 or 3+ in this way will erode the recovery. So I think we’ll be very upset. cautious about how we aim to move forward.”
But Pi fans shouldn’t give up on the idea of the Pi 5, which will most likely arrive in 2024.
“But the good news is, in the second half of 2024 and on, some of that starts to abate, and that’s when we can start thinking about what a sensible Raspberry Pi 5 platform could be,” Upton said. speak .