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NVIDIA to sell own branded GPUs

by Pete Mason on 5 October 2010, 12:06

Tags: GeForce GTX 460, GeForce GTS 450 SLI, NVIDIA (NASDAQ:NVDA)

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News surfaced yesterday of a few mysterious black and green boxes showing up in product shipments to Best Buy stores in the US, followed by NVIDIA branded graphics-cards appearing on shelves at the retailer. Now, the GPU-maker has confirmed that it will be offering own-brand video-cards to the public.

So far, only GTX 460 and GTS 450 cards appear to be available, and the GPUs are stock clocked with designs based on the reference PCB and cooler.

Having questioned NVIDIA, a representative responded with the following statement:

"NVIDIA and Best Buy are working together to offer PC customers the opportunity to experience firsthand the latest in PC technologies right inside Best Buy stores. As part of this broad initiative, NVIDIA is supplying to Best Buy specific GeForce models built and supported by NVIDIA. These products will only be available at Best Buy and will complement GeForce products from our partners."

The spokesperson added that this initiative applies only to Best Buy stores and only in the US, with no plans to expand into any other regions or retailers.

The move is an interesting one, and could be a response to the loss of several high-profile partners over the last year or so. XFX added AMD cards to its line-up with the launch of the Radeon HD 4000-series, while BFG bowed out of the graphics-card industry earlier this year. 

NVIDIA will undoubtedly hope that the move will increase the profile - as well as retail presence - of its GPUs as pressure continues to mount from AMD. However, it will be interesting to see how AIB partners respond to the company encroaching on their territory.

HEXUS Forums :: 11 Comments

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Oh Charlie is going to love this one. Just when he thought nVidia couldn't annoy its partners further…
Its not a very broad initiative when its only availible in one retailer in one country…
surely what it basically does is makes best buy another partner however they wont be rebranding
surely what it basically does is makes best buy another partner however they wont be rebranding

That's a really interesting way of looking at it, and a really good point.

I'm reminded of what Google did with the Nexus One. Everyone said that the partners would revolt and cause Android to come crashing down at Google's feet. And then that didn't happen. Even if NVIDIA was going for a wide roll-out, I don't think it would be a big deal, since it's so common these days to have factory-overclocked and custom-cooled cards. AIB partners could easily differentiate themselves.

This wasn't the case back when 3DFX burnt all of their bridges by selling cards directly. Guess we'll see how it develops.
But, 3rd party cards are usually OC'ed, have better coolers, game bundles and osmetimes lifetime warranty. How the hell can nvidia compete?