The earthquake in Japan will undoubtedly affect Silicon Valley. Technology analyst Larry Magid says that that, “It’s really bad news for Silicon Valley but not devastating news.” The problem, he explains, is the dependence on Japanese manufacturers for parts in products. Some 30 to 40 percent of all semiconductors used worldwide come from Japan, and more specifically, from the main island of Honshu, which was affected by the quake.
Japan is the major producer of NAND flash memory chips, which are used to store photos in digital cameras and cell phones, and to store music in iPods and MP3 players. Analysts say that a shortage in chips could affect the market in April or May, but they also point out that manufacturing has already resumed in plants near Tokyo.
There is, however, some good news from Japan for local companies. Both Google and Intel have reported that all of their employees in Japan are safe.