Nvidia Jumpstart 2016

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Swanky place for a swanky brand

Nvidia held its partner-centric Jumpstart event at Plaza Ibarra, Timog, yesterday along with hardware partners Asus, Galax, Gigabyte, Inno3D, MSI, and Zotac, each of them  demonstrating their own versions of Nvidia-powered graphics and accompanying partner products like motherboards, displays, and peripherals.

This year’s focus lay mainly on the entry level yet powerful GTX 1050 and 1050 Ti videocards, and by extension, its perfect adaptability to the iCafe scene. Consequently Nvidia invited many of the biggest players in the local internet cafe / gaming industry, with the likes of Mineski, Garena and TNC attending the event.

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Nvidia’s top local executives were on hand to present Nvidia’s plans for their business partners, starting off with Nvidia APAC GPU Product Marketing Director Andy Hsu who spoke of the importance of the social aspect and “overall experience” in the iCafe business, and how the affordable GPUs Nvidia releases will fit iCafe requirements.

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Nvidia iCafe Program Manager Alex Liao reminded the iCafe owners in the audience how much PC gaming development has increased, with fully 52% of game development currently devoted to the PC platform. The popularity of eSports was also mentioned to be a prime reason for the increasing business opportunity for the internet cafe, with 2016 seeing more than eighty thousand iCafes (with a total of around 2 million PCs) coming online in South East Asia. Mr. Liao also expounded on the capabilities of the GTX 1050 and 1050 Ti, promising 60fps at 1080p resolution for most popular titles such as WoW and War Thunder.

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Jerome Matti, Nvidia Philippines Consumer Sales Manager, also took to the stage to talk about the different ways Nvidia is able to help the iCafe owner with programs such as GeForce certification through the Jumpstart network, software solutions, and pointing out trends like tournament events and increasing interest in Virtual Reality.

The display and demonstration area was also a hotbed of activity with each hardware partner demonstrating their own, demanding game on the same 1050 and 1050 Ti hardware. Palit was even demonstrating an Oculus Rift setup at their station.

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Nvidia hardware partners

We’ve come to expect a lot of exciting news from Nvidia Jumpstart over the years, and this year was no different. Even with the high-end products already out (GTX 1080, Titan, 1070), the 1050 and 1050 Ti release generates its own kind of excitement in that even a $109 and $139 videocard (respectively) will both be able to run the games demanded by increasingly sophisticated iCafe gamers, making it easier for iCafe owners to stay within budget, increase their margins, and still give a fast and smooth gameplay experience for its patrons.

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Interestingly, all of Nvidia’s hardware partners were offering a version of the above promo – buy 20pcs of 1050 or 1050Ti and get some sort of freebie. For MSI, it was for its DS B1 Gaming Mouse. For Inno3D, an HP Ink advantage 1115 Printer was on offer. Zotac was offering a choice of 2 units of their T400 120GB SSD or a Totolink SG24 Gigabit switch. I am unsure whether this is on offer for end users, but it’s certainly available for iCafe owners.

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