Uncomfirmed reports say that Apple and Nvidia are on the outs, with the Mac maker banishing Nvidia from future Mac products for the next three to four years. SemiAccurate reported Thursday that Apple is tense with recent Nvidia proposals, characterizing them as arrogant and full of bluster.
The report was attributed to unnamed sources familiar with the negotiations, and so far neither company is confirming it. Those sources said that Apple told Nvidia (paraphrased by SemiAccurate), "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."
The most recent sign of trouble between the two companies surfaced in May of 2009, when Apple posted a Knowledge Base article blaming Nvidia for problems with mobile graphics chip sets, and suggesting that Nvidia mislead the company on whether or not said problems affected units supplied to Apple. Problems relating to these chipsets has resulted in one class-action lawsuit against Nvidia.
Apple has two other graphics processer suppliers it can work with if it turns out Nvidia really is being shown the door. The company can buy chipsets from Intel and dedicated, high-end graphics cards from AMD's ATI. Intel is also working on a high-end, multi-core, parallel graphics platform, though there has not yet been any public hint that Apple would be using this platform.
In addition, Apple has hired not one, but two of ATI's top engineering executives this year, though it is not known exactly what these two execs are working on for the company. It is difficult to believe that Apple would be looking to bring GPU development in-house, but the company has been marshalling resources that could be turned to this direction if the company so chose.