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Nvidia will soon be showing adverts to calm queue rage for free tier users of GeForce Now

When Nvidia launched GeForce Now back in 2020, the game streaming service bucked the trend of most media companies by offering a completely free membership. With no strings whatsoever, other than a time restriction on the gaming session, there was little to complain about. That’s still the case now but users of the free tier will soon be shown adverts while they’re waiting in a queue for a server space to become available.

The change will commence March 5th, according to The Verge who reported the news, and you could be looking at up to two minutes worth of ads. I guess that’s how long Nvidia estimates the average queue time to be, but if it’s longer, does that mean you’ll see more? That’s not clear at the moment, but we won’t have long to wait before we’ll know for certain.

Update: Nvidia has confirmed that two minutes is the maximum. If the queue lasts longer, then you won’t see more ads.

Nvidia also told The Verge it expects the injection of ads will reduce the queue period for free tier users over time, and we all know what it means by that. It’s a win for Nvidia however you look at it, as the ads will increase GeForce Now’s revenue and it will ease the server load a bit, as some people will just get put off by the unskippable clips and stop queuing up.

It’s a little surprising that Nvidia didn’t introduce adverts earlier, or even right from the start, as that’s something you’d expect from a free service these days. I last tried the free service a couple of years ago and while it was okay, it’s meant as an advert itself for the nice paid membership option, though that service is not without problems.

GeForce Now is at its best when you’re connected to its most powerful servers, the ones sporting RTX 4080 graphics cards, and on a handheld PC like a Steam Deck, it can be really impressive. Provided you have a fast and stable Internet connection, of course. If your Wi-Fi has latency issues, then it can be quite a frustrating experience in certain games.

Anyway, at least the ads will only be shown to free users while they’re waiting for a server slot: You won’t see them while you’re playing any games. Let’s hope that never comes to pass because we all know what that’s like, even when it’s down to a technical glitch.


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