My message to The Inquirer (they were soliciting user reaction to the lack of Soundstorm in nForce 4):
Mr. Henry is obviously trying to recast the news the nForce 4 will not support Soundstorm as a matter of user indifference when the opposite is, in fact, the case. He has to be consciously lying through his teeth when he says that the presence of Soundstorm (or lack thereof) does not influence buying decisions. I bought my nForce 2 Asus A78NX Deluxe specifically because of Soundstorm. Clearly, I am not in a small minority. I was eagerly awaiting nForce 4 with SS before moving to Athlon 64. There is now no incentive to purchase an nForce 4 board. If I stick to AMD, Iâ€™ll certainly go with a VIA or ATI chipset. I hate saying this, but Intel with HD audio is actually looking good. That was painful, but, itâ€™s the sad truth. Clearly, Mr. Henry has not listened to his customer base despite his contentions to the contrary.
As a technology product marketing manager who faces the same issues as those faced by nVidia and Mr. Henry, I understand his dilemma. Nevertheless, the true reason is the cost of Dolby licensing. I also have to deal with this as we contemplate adding Dolby-E encoding/decoding capabilities to our broadcast equipment. The fact is, our customers want it and they will bear the costs. nVidia should have done the same and offered a high-end option with Soundstorm for which a reasonable ($40-$50) price premium could have been expected and would have gladly been tendered by a good percentage of potential nForce 4 users.
Rather than making it appear that he is responsive to customer feedback when he is not, Mr. Henry would have been better off to have told the truth rather than to cast his customers as the culpable parties.