Next-gen graphics demand on hold until Vista launch

Nvidia has lead the way on DirectX 10 graphics technology with last week’s launch of the DirectX 10-compliant GeForce 8800 GPU, and it has had a mixed reception – see the PC Pro and Custom PC write ups.

According to graphics industry sources in Taiwan, however, demand for such high-end cards may not pick up until Microsoft’s Vista is actually released. This is unsurprising given that DirectX 10 will only feature in retail copies of Windows Vista (excluding the Home Basic version). But, according to DigiTimes, this gives a Window of opportunity to Nvidia’s rival, ATI.

Specifically, it will not be too late for ATI to launch its DirectX 10-supporting R600 at the beginning of 2007. They believe insufficient software support is currently ‘hampering demand’.

The launch of Vista is expected to increase demand for such graphics cards by 20 to 30 per cent in the retail market, states the website.

Available as both a runtime and an SDK for development, DirectX is Microsoft’s collection of APIs for supporting multimedia in general and computer gaming in particular. As well as PCs, it is used on Xbox and Xbox 360 consoles. Version 1.0 appeared back in 1995. The new version, 10.0, will appear with Vista, which will be on general retail release from 30 January 2007.

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