NVIDIA to Retailers: Please don’t sell GPUs to Cryptocurrency Miners

Fun Crypto is a column talking about the interesting, yet fun, aspects of the cryptocurrency world.

The PC gaming scene is as alive as it has ever been. With eSports on the rise (especially here in the Philippines since a cult following has grown in support of the Filipino eSport community) and the PC Market set to grow again this year, the prospects for PC manufacturers look rosy.

In fact, if you would ask a person 5 years ago why he would even buy a high end GPU, he would probably say: to play video games at a smooth frame rate and beautiful graphics. These days though, GPUs like that aren’t just for games anymore cryptoccurrency miners have started taking a good chunk of the GPU market, and it’s been increasing at an alarming rate. Just look at the total hashrates increasing across the board in the crypto space.

And this has become a source of controversy for the PC Community. And who wouldn’t be mad? Prices of GPUs have doubled and even tripled in the past year alone. GPUs have been out of stock in many places around the world. Can’t get a GPU in your local retail shop? Now you know why.

It’s gotten so bad that scalpers are hoarding GPUs so they could sell them at exorbitant prices. And the PC community is livid.

So much so that California-based technology company NVIDIA has asked retailers of its graphics cards to prioritize sales to gamers over cryptocurrency miners. The company wants its cards to go to gamers instead and it’s trying to do so by directly selling on its website and asking its retail partners to limit orders to two cards per person. Rumors are also circulating that they might be making a GPU that specializes in mining cryptocurrency.

In a statement, the company said:

For NVIDIA, gamers come first. All activities related to our GeForce product line are targeted at our main audience. To ensure that GeForce gamers continue to have good GeForce graphics card availability in the current situation, we recommend that our trading partners make the appropriate arrangements to meet gamers’ needs as usual. 

Ultimately, NVIDIA can request (and even beg) whatever it wants, but it’s up to retailers and brick and mortar retailers to actually enforce those suggestions. Some may choose not to, and really, it’s hard to blame them with profit margins historically always tracking the supply/demand curve. However, pricing products at sometimes many multiples over what they should be, just simply taking advantage of consumers in a bubble market like this, won’t soon be forgotten. And this problem must be addressed sooner rather than later.

For now, better think twice about buying a GPU for that smooth, beautiful Witcher 3 Ultra video settings.

An avid cypto supporter, law school student, Certified Public Accountant, and a professional HODLer