To say Raspberry Pis have been difficult to find recently would be a major understatement. It’s even worse if you’re trying to find these single-board computers at official prices from approved retailers. Stock is often sold out months in advance before it even hits the store.
Makers have been forced to turn to scalpers and pay inflated prices for Pi boards. This shouldn’t be so, but it’s really just the law of supply and demand. Luckily, there are services that can help you get a Raspberry Pi, even during the current shortage.
The Current Raspberry Pi Shortage
Raspberry Pis are credit-card sized computers that are quite versatile, from their ability to run Linux to their use in fields ranging from robotics and 3D printing to home automation and DIY projects.
For this reason among others, the Raspberry Pi is one of the most popular single-board computers on the market today, but it’s also one of the most sought after. Because of their high utility coupled with supply constraints, these SBCs are in short supply and hard to find in stock.
There are several other reasons for the Raspberry Pi shortage. The key thing to note is that the supply shortage started at the beginning of 2021 and there are no signs of it ending anytime soon. In the meantime, there are several ways you can deal with the shortage without using Amazon or eBay scalpers.
It’s important to stay on top of updates from Raspberry Pi if you’re trying to find one that’s in stock. The five services listed below can help you find a Raspberry Pi in stock. We recommend using one of these services if you have been unable to get your hands on a Raspberry Pi.
Rpilocator is a website that can help you find Raspberry Pis in stock. It was created by Andrè Costa due to his frustration with “trying to locate a Raspberry Pi product at the height of the chip and supply chain shortages of 2021.”
It is a completely free service that displays a constantly updated list of vendors that currently stock Raspberry Pis, along with their respective prices. Rpilocator checks for stock across different vendors such as Newark, OKdo, The Pi Hut, Adafruit, Pimoroni, and Farnell.
You can sort the listings by description, vendors, stock status, and price in ascending or descending order. Also, the menu provides you with the option to look for specific devices, certain vendors, or in a region. So, if you’re looking to get your hands on a Raspberry Pi CM4, for example, you can click on the Devices and select CM4 from the drop-down list. Rpilocator will then present you with a list of vendors who have that model in stock (or had it in stock recently) and their prices.
Rpilocator lists both local stores that sell Raspberry Pis and online vendors who will ship them to you. You can set the listings to auto-refresh and have an alert sound play whenever the list is updated. Additionally, you can follow Rpilocator on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed.
While not specifically focused on Raspberry Pi products, nowinstock.net is another product availability tracker that you can use to find Raspberry Pi models available for sale at official prices.
It’s free to use, but you need to create and verify an account to receive stock alerts from the website. You can receive alerts via email, SMS or in-browser. The website is supported by affiliate commissions. The tracker is auto updated every minute and tracks websites like Newark, Best Buy, Vilros, eBay, and Amazon.
Raspberry Alert is a bot that fetches data from Rpilocator and posts it in a Telegram channel.This one will be of interest to regular Telegram users since it provides real-time notifications.
The channel doesn’t link directly to the products but to the Rpilocator website, on the creator’s request. The code is open-source, and you can host the bot yourself on your own server.
The bot makes it easier to get updates without constantly refreshing the Rpilocator website. Alerts are deleted two days after they’re posted, and they are edited before then to reflect the current stock status. So, if you want to get a Raspberry Pi, be sure to join the channel and turn on your Telegram notifications.
Fastalerts.io is a free restock tracker created in 2021 to beat graphic cards and gaming console scalpers to the punch. Raspberry Pi boards, specifically Pi 4 and Pi Zero 2, were added to the tracker earlier this year.
The tracker checks retailers every 10-30 seconds for available stock and provides alerts either via the web-based tracker, SMS ($4.99 per month), or in the Discord community. Aside from regular automated checks, restock news is also crowdsourced from users. If you live in the United States and you need a Raspberry Pi 4 or a Raspberry Pi Zero 2, you should definitely check out Fast Alerts.
The Raspberry Pi website does not list suppliers with Raspberry Pis in stock, but it can help you find official retailers in your area. With the increasing number of scalpers out there, it is imperative to know who the approved retailers are. That’s where the official Raspberry Pi website comes in handy. By navigating to the page for the device you want and selecting the model and your country, you will be shown a list of approved resellers for Home, Industry, and Education purposes.
Finding a Raspberry Pi During The Shortage
The Raspberry Pi is a handy, low-cost device for tinkering with electronics and building Internet of Things projects. Unfortunately, the resulting high demand has contributed to the current shortage of Raspberry Pis in stock. To help you battle the odds, we have compiled a list of services that might be able to help you find what you seek.
By exercising some tenacity and patience, you will increase your chances of getting your hands on a Raspberry Pi. Make sure you order the exact number of Raspberry Pi boards you need and no more, so other people can buy without having to resort to scalpers.