With Nvidia customers still fuming about the misleading specs of the GeForce GTX 970, along with a recent lawsuit filing against Nvidia, the company's president and CEO, Jen-Hsun Huang, posted an open letter (opens in new tab) explaining the miscommunication within the company and apologizing to customers.
In the eyes of the consumer, the biggest issue with the GTX 970 was the memory, which some believe is misleading because the advertised capacity was 4 GB but was really 3.5 GB, with the final 512 MB of memory segmented with a smaller bandwidth.
Huang said that the split in memory was the company's new memory architecture and was created to give reduced configurations of Maxwell a larger frame buffer.
"This is a good design because we were able to add an additional 1 GB for GTX 970 and our software engineers can keep less frequently used data in the 512 MB segment," he said.
But what happened between Nvidia's engineering and marketing division was a failure to communicate. By not relaying the specifics of the video memory to marketing, and thus to reviewers, customers were then misled about how the 4 GB of memory was actually implemented on the card. Huang wanted people to be excited about the 970, but the miscommunication resulted in frustrated and angry customers.
As Nvidia moves forward after this incident, Huang assured customers that features will be "clearly detailed from the beginning," and he said that the company "won't let this happen again." Hopefully, its efforts will be enough to regain the trust of old customers.
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Anyone else read about these cards supposedly crashing freezing or causing poor performance in other 3D software (non-gaming) ?
Engineering would understand this memory design and its implications, but it is the marketing droids that would relate it to existing product descriptions without regard to any limitations.
Yes, it was a screw-up, and I don't blame people for being upset. I think it is an issue that can be mitigated in software though, and in product literature and advertising by clearly segmenting the RAM there too.
Sales/Marketing guys often recycle old technical data sheet because they either are too lazy to update it, or the engineers have not provide an updated version after changes in specs.
Also, lab performances are often times different from a production sample so they have to tweak it a little bit, which isn't always communicated to the sales team as long as the production samples met product specifications.
He is far more kind and humble than I am. These people at Nvidia work about 20 times harder than the couch potato gamers to keep giving us more graphics power. It is a insanely difficult job. You people have your 4 GB, now give it a rest or just build your own fab and make your own graphic cards. If you want to villanize someone I will tell you who to throw rocks at. Microsoft, thats the enemy.