A crisis is brewing for a host of small manufacturers pinning their future on the 80386 microprocessor according to the latest intelligence coming in from the US. While Intel is still saying that it will have shipped between 500,000 and 1m of the chips by the end of the year, it reveals that demand has tripled over the past few weeks, so that greater shortages and longer delays than expected are now likely. And full production of the remasked 80386 chips without the 32-bit arithmetic bug will not begin before the end of July at the earliest. But at least one industry watcher contracted by the US newswire Microbytes Daily reckons that by the end of the year, the supply and demand situation will be in worse shape than Intel says, adding that the only way Intel can meet the commitment is to dump all the parts on customers sometime during the fourth quarter, so that companies won’t have any chance to gear up manufacturing in a normal fashion. Background and full report – page 2.