US trade sanctions restrict Nvidia from exporting advanced GPUs such as the A100 and H100 to China.
As a workaround, Nvidia developed the A800 and H800 GPUs specifically for Chinese customers, but these were also blocked by US regulations updated last October, leading to the creation of the H20.
Tailored specifically for the Chinese market, the GPU is aimed at AI training and will cost between $12,000 and $15,000. South China Morning Post Cited an anonymous industry source.
Nvidia's latest low-cost AI GPU has reportedly landed in China, but it faces stiff competition from the company's previous models and Huawei's secret weapon, the Ascend 910B. The H20's computing power is said to be similar to Huawei's GPU, a chip developed by the Chinese tech giant that is currently under U.S. trade sanctions. The Ascend 910B has not been officially confirmed by Huawei, but it is available through various sales channels in China.
However, Nvidia's H20's performance doesn't seem to match its predecessors. According to some sources, the H20's features are significantly behind his A800 and A100, although full in-house testing has not yet been completed.
In terms of price, a high-end server with eight Nvidia H20 cards costs around $195,800. By comparison, Huawei servers incorporating the 910B chip were selling for about $200,000 as of January this year.
Several Chinese customers have reportedly received H20 samples for testing, and pre-orders are now open, but Nvidia's GPUs will arrive in China in the second quarter and products containing H20 will ship. is scheduled to begin in July.
Nvidia's GPUs are in high demand globally, with major Chinese technology companies spending billions of dollars to acquire them to power new AI technologies. The company's data center division surpassed video games to become the top revenue contributor in fiscal 2023, with sales reaching a record $14.51 billion.
However, it remains to be seen how the H20 will be received by Chinese customers, as new US regulations limit functionality.