Mass battery recalls causing shortages

— 1:41 AM on October 17, 2006

With the Sony battery recall counter now past the 7.7 million mark, Bloomberg reports that the epidemic is causing industry-wide shortages. Sony is the world's second-biggest manufacturer of rechargeable battery cells, but the diversion of some of its production towards replacement batteries has caused shortages. Sanyo and Samsung, the other major players in the market, have been unable to take up the slack. According to Taiwanese battery pack manufacturers, a typical one-month wait for shipments is now taking three months, and prices for battery cells have increased by 15% because of the recalls. Since Sony's lithium-ion battery cells are not used solely in laptops, the shortage is also affecting other devices, such as portable music players. This situation could hurt sales during the holiday season, and Taiwanese manufacturers predict the shortages may last all the way until June next year.

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