AMD, Roy Taylor, the Nano, and the Press

One thing is for sure in the GPU market, sooner or later some company is going to pull a full-on screw-the-pooch moment and continue to spiral down even after someone realizes the mistake. We have seen is happen in the past, and it just happened this week to AMD. Poor little Nano.

No Nano? No Problem!

Let me get this out of the way....AMD is not sampling a Nano Video Card for review. That however is not the motivation behind this editorial, but I will get to that below. This is not whining, this is not bitching. Quite frankly, I do not even care that HardOCP is not getting a Nano card for review. I really do not. I do however care about how the press is getting treated by AMD and subsequently the enthusiast PC hardware community.

AMD had no issue bringing HardOCP along for the ride when it PAPER LAUNCHED its Nano card. AMD also had no problem sending a free Nano to one of our HardForum members so he could post a custom build log on our pages.

It was not till AMD started sending Nano cards to other editors that we even found out we were being excluded from the Nano launch. I was already in the process of specifying and identifying the cases we wanted to test in as well as getting sample of the small GTX 970 card on the market for comparison.

AMD did not actively inform us we were being excluded, we had to ask. Then AMD would not respond in writing which I would have been CCd on, but rather elected to call Brent and inform him of why leaving me fully out of that conversation. A "bitch" move by Antal Tungler at AMD, but OK nonetheless. I did send an email informing Antal that if we are "cut off" in the future to make sure that I am the person that is called, not Brent.

Some folks say that HardOCP did not get Nano to review, because we put so much emphasis on the Nano PAPER Launch, being a "PAPER" launch. I really do not think so since AMD’s own PR company was calling it a paper launch.

Hi Kyle,

AMD has not yet issued any samples of the card. Thursday is the paper launch of the R9 Nano, but it will not be on shelf for a few weeks. AMD will be connecting with press directly regarding sampling.

Please let me know if you’re interested in learning more about AMD’s small form factor GPU and are available for a briefing tomorrow at 1 p.m. PT.

Thanks very much!


Caitlin Stewart

Account Executive, Earned Media, Technology

Edelman | 150 Bloor Street West, Suite 300 | Toronto, Ontario M5S 2X9

So I really don’t think the PAPER Launch thing was a big deal, mostly because this was a paper launch. HardOCP has fought for years to get the GPU industry away from paper launches and in fact have been very successful, but lately AMD is migrating back to this paper launch model. I think this way, their stock prices get to duck shitty day one reviews of its recent products. Not to say all the reviews are shitty, but surely some are.

Others have said HardOCP is not getting a card because I am an asshole and hung up on a phone call with AMD about the Nano, which is true. I am an asshole, and I did hang up, but let me give you a bit of context. I hung up on a conference call with about 13 or 15 people present after the entire presentation had been given and the Q&A portion of the call was underway. AMD’s antiquated concall system has no way of even tracking who calls in, much less who hangs up, and I kept my mouth shut during the call. A journalist asked how much the Nano cost, the $650 question was answered, and I hung up. Brent Justice, HardOCP Managing GPU Editor, was still on the call as he would be covering the Nano firsthand, or at least we thought so. So, while I am an asshole and I did hang up, I don’t think AMD was even aware of my actions much less I don’t think AMD is petty enough to give a damn about that concall.

At this time, I had let all this go, and just put it all behind me, and told Brent, we will go ahead and purchase whatever we need to purchase for a Nano test, and move forward.

Then I read what Roy Taylor was posting on Twitter....and he came across as being a jackass.

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