What just happened? Nvidia released its earnings report for the fiscal fourth quarter yesterday, and while it performed slightly better than predicted, the company’s gaming GPU revenue was down 45 percent year-over-year—partly due to lower-than-expected sales of its RTX 2070 and RTX 2080 cards.
Late last month, Nvidia updated its financial guidance for Q4, downgrading its expectations due to weaker than forecast sales in its gaming and datacenter businesses. Yesterday’s results were in line with those predictions.
Non-GAAP earnings per share were 80 cents, while analysts were looking for 75 cents. Revenue, meanwhile, came in at $2.21 billion. While that was down 24 percent YoY, it still beat the $2.20 billion Wall Street expected. Before Nvidia downgraded its guidance, analysts had been expecting $2.7 billion. And although shares are up 15 percent since the beginning of the year, they’re down around 36 percent across the last 12 months.
“This was a turbulent close to what had been a great year," Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang said in the company's press release. "The combination of post-crypto excess channel inventory and recent deteriorating end-market conditions drove a disappointing quarter."
Huang said the price of Nvidia's high-end RTX launch cards saw many consumers resisting any purchases until the costs dropped. The delayed release of the RTX 2060—a result of Nvidia trying to get rid of its excess GTX 1060 stock following the crypto crash—also hurt sales.
"The inability to launch [the] 2060 was a big inhibitor for us, but we did so at CES," said Huang.
Looking to the future, Nvidia is predicting that fiscal year 2020 revenue will be "flat to down slightly,” while analysts were expecting a 7 percent decline.
Huang said the upcoming year would be a big one for gaming laptops, with more than 40 set to launch with RTX 2060 cards. And while there are currently few games that take advantage of Turing’s RTX real-time ray tracing capabilities, such as the just-launched Metro Exodus, more of them will start arriving in the coming months.