The GPU shortage has made life very difficult for any gamer wishing to upgrade their graphics card without having to remortgage their house first. But there was a ray of hope yesterday, as rumors emerged that Nvidia was ramping up RTX 3050 production. Now, Nvidia itself has said it expects supply issues to ease later this year, which will hopefully increase GPU availability.
The announcement came from Colette Kress, Nvidia’s chief financial officer, at the 24th Annual Needham Growth Conference (via Seeking Alpha). Speaking at the event, Kress said things should start to perk up in the second half of 2022 thanks to the work Nvidia has done with its supply chain partners. That follows similar remarks Kress made in late 2021, and indicates the GPU giant is feeling confident the shortage will ease.
“Throughout all of calendar 2021, we have seen strong demand for GeForce. And it continues to remain strong, and stronger than our overall supply that we have,” Kress explained at the conference. “We had seen channel levels be quite lean, and we are working with our supply chain partners to increase the availability of supply. And we feel better about our supply situation as we move into the second half of the calendar year ’22.”
Kress didn’t go into detail about what exactly would happen to alleviate the supply issues, but we can take a reasonable guess: The arrival of Nvidia’s 40-series GPUs (code-named Ada Lovelace). Seeing as Nvidia’s schedule usually sees a new series launch roughly every two years, and the last update was the 30-series Ampere cards in 2020, 2022 seems to be a good time for Ada Lovelace GPUs to make an appearance.
The Ada Lovelace cards are expected to use TSMC’s N5 process. Reports in late 2021 indicated that Nvidia was switching back to TSMC after a year with Samsung due to the latter’s yield issues. If the report is correct, Nvidia likely feels TSMC is able to provide better yields than Samsung, which is good news for GPU-hungry gamers.
And given the incredible demand for graphics cards, it’s likely Nvidia has also taken the opportunity to increase its orders of Ada Lovelace GPUs from TSMC. Combined with TSMC’s stronger yields, that could mean a better chance of there being enough cards to go around when the 40-series is announced.
We’re going through what seems to be a tentative upturn in fortunes for gamers at the moment. CES 2022 saw the unveiling of budget GPUs from both Nvidia and AMD, and while we don’t expect them to be available at retail price for a good while yet, it at least indicates the companies’ willingness to make GPUs a little more affordable. That could be helped even more if Nvidia’s supply predictions pan out.