September 22, 2020 | 13:00
Nvidia has openly apologised for the mess also known as its GeForce RTX 3080 preorder launch, which led to many disappointed consumers.
In a statement and FAQ, Nvidia explained that the reception was at a level the company didn't expect. It received four times the unique visitors to the website compared to the previous launch, ten times the peak web requests per second, and more than fifteen times the out clicks to partner pages. Simply put, Nvidia was overwhelmed.
It described the demand as "unprecedented" and the firm and its partners underestimated it. While over 50 major retailers had inventory on launch day, they all recorded record traffic that in many cases exceeded Black Friday, thereby leading to crashes, delays and other issues.
GeForce RTX 3080s were meant to be available at 6am PST on 17th September but the site went straight to out of stock for many. Nvidia explained this was because the store was inundated with over ten times the traffic of the previous generation launch and simply couldn't cope at first.
Understandably, some consumers reckoned that there was low inventory to begin with but Nvidia disputes that, explaining that there's "great supply" but "not for this level of demand". However, the firm has been increasing supply weekly and is working to ramp up capacity to make up for those that missed out through the initial allocation.
Nvidia also pointed out that some of the issue stemmed from "malicious bots and resellers" so it's updated the Nvidia store with increased capacity along with more bot protection. There's no CAPTCHA added to the checkout flow to cut down on the bots, along with other additional security protections. Also, to combat what's happened here, Nvidia has cancelled hundreds of orders manually that were clearly made by bots.
Check out the comments on Nvidia's statement and, well, it hasn't exactly been warmly received. Many customers remain frustrated and cynically wondering just how much of a difference to Nvidia it makes as long as the firm achieves good sales.
It's not the only company to have struggled in recent times with both preorders of the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X also being far from consumer-friendly with stock very hard to come by, but it has offered the most comprehensive of apologies thus far. Whether Nvidia learns from its mistakes, we'll have to wait and see when it comes to future preorders.
May 5 2021 | 09:30