Raspberry Pi Dispatch: Have the “Million-Unit Months” Begun?

Raspberry Pi Million Unit Months title image

Roughly two months ago, David Bombal interviewed Eben Upton on his YouTube channel.

In the interview, he made it clear that in the first quarter of 2023, production was lower than it had been since 2015. However, Upton stated that things were turning around last quarter and would be in full swing by July.

We all, of course, have been asking these questions for a long time.

Upton goes on to indicate that products will likely return in the order of production, meaning that the Raspberry Pi Zero ought to be generally available first, followed by the Raspberry Pi 3A+, the ultimately arriving at Raspberry Pi 4.

This, he admits, “is, of course, difficult for hobbyists, because I know a lot of hobbyists, they really want the latest and shiniest product.”

He goes on to say that since the Raspberry Pi 4 and the Raspberry Pi Compute Module 4 (both containing BCM2711 processors) are particularly popular with Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs), those will “take the longest to come back into general availability”.

If you’re interested in purchasing these products, however, they are currently available here.

But July is supposed to be the Raspberry Pi Ltd.’s return to million-unit months.

So here we are, nearing the end of July, and the million dollar question is are we in the first million-unit month of the year?

And the clear answer seems to be a resounding “yes”!

At least, if not exactly 1,000,000, it seems pretty close.

Just yesterday, Upton confirmed that in June the company produced 788,000 units, “our second best month ever”.

He then went on to clarify that this number consisted of 119,000 Raspberry Pi Zeros, of which 33,000 were Raspberry Pi Zero 2s “(almost entirely [for] consumer[s])”. And clarified that the “Revenue breakdown looks good for many consumer-focused resellers.” And that it should be roughly 250,000 to 400,000 units going towards retail.

So although the company didn’t hit the target of 800,000 units last month, they got wildly close.

Turning from months to quarters, that means that in the first quarter of the year, they produced 1,000,000 units. In the second quarter, they produced around 2,000,000 units.

Now that we’ve entered the third quarter (July, August, September), Upton has said they’ll be hitting 3,000,000 per quarter.

That’s roughly one unit every 2.6 seconds.

Unless my math is wrong, in which case, it’s not.

Nevertheless, it looks like everything’s on track to meet that goal.

If you want another really in-depth interview with Eben Upton, you can also check out Jeff Geerling’s.

Perhaps what makes this the most exciting is that once things return to normal (and even better than normal with million-unit months!), we can start getting back on track for the Raspberry Pi 5!

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