Nvidia made up to $300 million from miners, but could nerf more GeForce GPUs
GPU stock could struggle until 2022, but that hasn’t stopped Nvidia from pulling in record numbers in its final quarter of the year. During a recent earnings call (via Seeking Alpha), the company revealed it has made over $5 billion in Q4, which is a 61% increase over last year’s $3.11 billion – half of which is attributed to its gaming division, and between $100 million and $300 million came from cryptocurrency miners.
Nvidia’s made no secret that “GeForce is made for gaming,” recently nerfing the RTX 3060 to perform worse when cryptocurrency mining software is detected by reducing the hash rate by half. The purpose of this is to shift miners onto its optimised CMP (Cryptocurrency Mining Processor) range in the near future, potentially alleviating the demand put on ordinary graphics cards and replenishing stock.
By saying that this effort to maximise the supply of GeForce GPUs begins by “starting with the 3060″ (emphasis ours), CFO Collete Kress hints that these kinds of restrictions could eventually be applied to other graphics cards in Nvidia’s RTX 30 series.
Since these limitations are applied through driver updates, it’s not clear how well they’ll work with the best graphics card that’s already on the market, given that owners could potentially just revert to an older driver. RTX 3060 owners have no choice in the matter with its very first driver packing the detection software, and the same is true for any other Nvidia GPUs in the pipeline.
Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang expects mining cards to become at least a “small part” of the business moving forward, but we’ve reached out to see what plans there are for existing and upcoming GeForce GPUs.