Uh oh, things may be about to get a bit messy for Nvidia. DigitalTrends is suggesting that antitrust regulators may be investigating Nvidia’s GeForce Partner Program (GPP) over fears it could be engaged in anti-competitive practices.
Nvidia’s GPP is a program that Nvidia’s OEM and AIB partners can sign up to in order to get their hands on the latest innovations, work with Nvidia’s engineering teams, and also engage in cross-brand marketing. Partners also benefit from discounted prices and priority allocations of GPUs versus those who don’t sign up to become GPP partners.
The downside is that, as part of the agreement, GeForce Partner Program partners must align their current gaming brands with GeForce, excluding AMD Radeon graphics cards from the branding efforts.
Over the weekend it emerged that Dell, HP, and Lenovo may have all refused to sign the Nvidia GPP deal, and things may be about to get a whole lot worse for Nvidia. Some gamers have said they’ll be boycotting Nvidia products, while others have gone a step further and got the US Federal Trade Commision (FTC) and the EU Commission involved. Some users on Reddit are now reporting that the FTC and the EU Commission have replied to them, and may perhaps even be looking into the claims in an official manner.
Nvidia has said nothing about the anti-consumer allegations, and nor probably will it, while the FTC and the EU have also been similarly quiet, at least in terms of public announcements. All of the claims leveled against Nvidia are alleged at this point in time, coming from anonymous sources.
If anything were to happen on this front it could mean potentially years of legal wrangling. There may even be absolutely nothing to it from a legal point of view, but there’s certainly a concerted blowback against what Nvidia’s trying to achieve here with GPP. A similar case was leveled at Intel back in 2009, labeling the chip giant’s business as "unfair, deceptive, and anti-competitive". This cost Intel to the tune of $2.65 billion in fines from the FTC and EU Commission collectively back in 2009.
Do you believe Nvidia's GeForce Partner Program is anti-competitive? Will this blow back in its face? Let us know your thoughts!
Thanks to ItsTheGamerEdit for bringing this to my attention!