Nvidia’s RTX 3080 launched earlier today, but unless you woke up as soon as the sales went live or, perhaps, had a bot that bought it for you, you wouldn’t know. We did our best to guide potential customers on where and how to buy the RTX 3080 yesterday afternoon, but the new holder of the Best Graphics Card crown is already sold out at every website we listed.
B&H’s entire site is down right now, in fact. And, according to customers, the cards sold out so fast that no amount of preparation would have let them get one.
Welp.... this is how fast the 3080 sold out pic.twitter.com/vFBZFXiX0FSeptember 17, 2020
“Sold Out” is also trending (opens in new tab) on Twitter right now, and it applies to exactly what you think it would. Some would-be RTX 3080 owners are saying that the cards sold out before the Add to Cart button even worked for them, while others claimed the Ampere cards sold out in 15 seconds.
This is ridiculous! The 3080 sold out IN 15 SECONDS! Immediately you could find it on EBAY!Sold before the "Add To Cart" button showed!I know it is tempting, but if you buy this stuff you are only rewarding them for doing this.Don't reward them!#100DaysOfCode #programming pic.twitter.com/cmNX8NwlDLSeptember 17, 2020
None of this is surprising for a major graphics card launch without pre-orders, but it is upsetting for folks who were hoping to get a card at launch without paying a premium to RTX 3080 scalpers, who already had their $1,000 - $1,200 listings up before the card even launched.
The Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080 suffered a similar fate at launch, so it’s not like the company didn’t know this could happen. Other industries have also been dealing with this for a while. Ticketmaster even sued an alleged scalper group for using a bot army to snatch up 30,000 Hamilton tickets at launch back in 2017. And the PS5 pre-ordering process is also on fire (opens in new tab) as we write, with listings quickly flickering between available and not available.
Online retail is more important than ever right now, with many unable or unwilling to enter brick-and-mortar stores in the midst of the pandemic. And, unfortunately, that means we’re also more vulnerable to bots than ever, as well. As with the 1080 launch, we’d expect stock to start reappearing anywhere from 2 weeks to 2 months from now. Though we could also see the shortage lasting into next year, given the card's stark jump in performance and the potential for cryptocurrency miners to start adopting it as a new standard.
In the meantime, our friends over at PC Gamer reached out to Nvidia, which reportedly said the following:
We've just spoken to Nvidia: “We are seeing unprecedented demand for the RTX 3080. We have been in production since August and are making them as quickly as possible. Our NV team and partners are shipping more every day to etailers & retailers”September 17, 2020
Other companies, like Newegg, are also starting to address the RTX 3080 stock shortage, and we've compiled their responses to the situation here.