Well, here we go again. Online etailer Newegg tweeted out this evening that while Nvidia's much-anticipated RTX 3070 graphics cards will debut tomorrow morning at 6am PT on shelves as expected, the retailer expects its entire inventory to sell out in mere minutes. The etailer also says that it has more inventory than it did during the previous 30-series launches, which have been plagued with constant shortages, but demand will far outstrip its supply.
Newegg says it is taking all the bot-beating measures it can to stem the flow of graphics cards to scalpers, touting that it has already stopped 'tens of millions' of bots during the RTX 3080 launch. Newegg will also limit purchases to one card per customer per 48 hours as an additional measure, though customers are free to purchase different models.
Also, of note: Newegg says not to refresh your browser too fast, or it will treat you like a bot, meaning you'll be blocked from purchasing a card.
🚨PSA: Tomorrow at 6am PT, we'll be releasing the @NVIDIAGeForce RTX 3070 video cards. We will have more inventory than previous 30 series launches, but do anticipate it to sell out in minutes. https://t.co/kV5Wu68JSZ 1/7 pic.twitter.com/VMURWfvl4uOctober 29, 2020
Unfortunately, this shouldn't come as much of a surprise: Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang recently commented that he expected the shortages of RYX 3080 and 3090 Ampere cards to last until 2021. Now we know for sure that those same shortages will apply to the highly-anticipated RTX 3070 cards. The only question is just how long the shortage will persist.
Newegg's report comes after Nvidia recently postponed the RTX 3070 launch to build up a supply. Still, given the 3070's impressive 2080 Ti-like performance at a reasonable $499 price point, we can expect demand will be even greater than we've seen for the 3080 and 3090.
Perhaps this is the opening AMD needs for its RX 6000 series Big Navi graphics cards that the chipmaker revealed today. AMD says those GPUs come with ultra-competitive performance at every level of the product stack, but just as importantly, they come with TSMC's 7nm process. That means AMD might not suffer from the same shortages that we see with Nvidia's Ampere GPUs that flow from Samsung's foundries.
We're heading into the holiday season, which means we should expect the incredible demand for new graphics cards to easily continue until the end of the year. At least AMD will have its new RX 6000 series on the market soon-ish (the RX 6800 lands on November 18, and the RX 6900XT comes on December 9) to help blunt the blow.
In the end, the graphics card maker that can keep the most cards on shelves may be the winner of the holiday sales season.