While this shouldn’t really come as a big surprise to anyone that pays attention to these sorts of things, a post over at Semiaccurate is saying that in all likely hood NVIDIA is “being shown the door” when it comes to future Apple system designs. 

Back when the NVIDIA-based Apple notebooks were first announced, you will remember a lot of confusion on the timing of such a move by the rising computing company.  Just a few months before, NVIDIA had to officially announce that it was having problems with a previous generation of mobile GPUs and chipsets and took quite a significant write off financial for the blunder.  Apple’s inclusion of the then brand-new GeForce 9400M mobile chipset was supposed to be a good sign for the GPU designer but as it turns out it might have just been a stop gap by Apple in its product line.

To quote from the above linked article:

The word is that Nvidia is out of Apple designs, starting with the Nehalem laptops and iMac type things. We are told the arrogance and bluster of Nvidia proposals were greeted with a response that, paraphrased, said, “Go away and don’t come back for 3-4 years if you are still around as a company. Lose our number, and if you do call, we will laugh at you again.”

In any case, that Apple page keeps changing, the warranties are now up to three years, and the disclaimer at the bottom is new too. Good for Apple, they seem to be the only ones attempting to protect their customers over the Nvidia bump scandal, Dell and HP sure as heck aren’t. Think about that when making your next purchase.

Now, in NVIDIA’s defense, there have been NO PROBLEMS with the GeForce 9400M integrated graphics that we have seen.  But Apple is not usually a company that takes risks from a hardware perspective – hence why they stuck with PowerPC components for so long.

NVIDIA at risk of losing the Apple deal - Mobile 2
Will it be a short relationship?

Because Apple’s design cycles are somewhat lengthy, NVIDIA will still be in the entire allotment of Apple machines for the foreseeable future.  But if this report is correct, it looks like NVIDIA might have some problems keeping Apple as a customer past this generation of products.  Even though Apple is not a huge quantity of sales, NVIDIA did gain a lot of positive reputation courtesy the adoption by one of the most forward-looking computer companies today.  If that company were to suddenly back out, the negative PR would be a potential disaster for NVIDIA executives.