In this unprecedented time with a global health crisis, there are several communities of children who are distance learning because it is just too dangerous to physically go to school. This has left the tech world facing a shortage of laptops in the United States, which means the kids are the ones missing.
What caused the shortage of laptops in the United States?
There was a lot of indecision throughout the first few weeks of August as to whether schools would open in the United States. While at the start of the pandemic it was thought that children were more or less immune to the virus, we now know that is not true. This has led to many school systems ultimately deciding to remain closed for the time being.
But the children still have to learn, so they are asked to do distance learning at home. If the family computer is tethered with mom and dad working from home, the kids need their own laptops. And in families with more than one child, if they are learning at the same time, they may each need their own laptop.
This is not the only factor leading to the Laptop shortage in the United States. The inventory cycle is also longer as port inspections are slowed down. The United States Postal Service is driven by politics, and it’s leading to slowdowns, some believing it’s intentional. Factory production in China is approaching normal rates, but the supply chain has been weakened. International relations have also sparked a trade war between the United States and China, which does not help the situation at all.
Dell, HP and Lenovo have said that collectively there is a shortage of 5 million laptops. This shortage means that suppliers have to decide who needs it most.
Addressing the Laptop Shortage in the United States
Morongo Unified School District principal Tom Baumgarten has ordered 5,000 Lenovo Chromebooks. Still, he was told they were banned due to an included component. They are more victims of the trade war.
Baumgarten then placed an order for HP laptops and was initially told he would receive them by August 26. However, the earliest possible is October. Chinese manufacturers prioritize their shipments. They put the needs of corporate and government orders above education.
Due to human rights violations in China, the US Department of Commerce has placed restrictions on who companies can do business with in China. Some companies are banned because they are seen as “accomplices in human rights violations and abuses”.
This leaves American children in need. If they don’t already have a computer to use, or if their school system is trying to provide its students with the same type of computer to facilitate distance learning efforts. They may be out of luck for a while.
Families and school systems will have to depend on outlets such as eBay and may reuse older machines as well. If you have an old laptop or two lying around, you may want to contact your local school district to see if there are any children in need. Likewise, if you are planning to buy a new computer, consider staying firm for a while during the laptop shortage in the United States. There may be a child who needs it more.
If you’re shopping for a laptop for your kid, you can try your luck with five of the best Linux laptops in 2020 or the best gaming laptops under $ 500 in 2020.
Is this article useful?