GEORGE TOWN: The spike in demand for laptops and personal devices from those having to work or study at home has led to a shortage of supply.
“Basic laptops with moderate specifications that are cheaper are all sold out, ” said Justin Choi, a laptop distributor store manager.
All that was available at his shop now were high-end ones which people buy for gaming, he said.
“These are the more expensive models that can cost anywhere from RM3,000 to RM20,000 depending on the specs and accessories.
“As people generally look for models that cater for their work or studies, they would not want to splurge on models designed for gaming, ” he said.
For now, Choi said that demand was high for laptops among households.
“Many are looking for reasonably priced and cheap laptops, but we are already out of stock.
“Those who want specific laptop models will have to order and wait. This usually takes three to four weeks.”
Choi claimed that his shop was not increasing prices despite the higher demand.
“This is because the laptops are already fitted with specs and model that are based on standard pricing.
“Some models may simply cost more because they are sold in bundle packages with a mouse, speakers or additional programmes, ” he explained.
Another gadget store sales executive, who wanted to be known only as Lim, said all the popular brands were sold out.
“Even the less sought-after models were sold out as many require them now, especially those working from home.
“Although we tried to order more stock from the suppliers, they are unable to supply, ” said Lim, 32.
Bukit Mertajam MP Steven Sim claimed that there was a price hike in personal computers and electronic gadgets sold in the market.
“Many are looking to get a reasonably priced laptop but they are out of stock everywhere.
“So people are now looking at laptops priced between RM5,000 and RM8,000.”
Prior to this, Sim said buyers could get second-hand laptops for a few hundred ringgit.
“Now, even second-hand ones cost over RM1,000. But even for these laptops, many have been told that they will have to wait three weeks for the stock to arrive.”
He hoped the government can intervene to monitor the prices of laptops and mobile devices.