This doesn't speak volumes for Nvidia's credibility. As you might recall, a huge swath of Nvidia's notebook graphics cards—ones with the G84 or G86 chipset—fail at "higher-than-normal" rates. MacBook Pros have the GeForce 8600M GT, which uses the G84. Nvidia assured Apple that MacBook Pros were totally cool. Turns out, they were lying! After doing their own investigation, Apple "has determined that some MacBook Pro computers... may be affected." Update: Nvidia just chimed in with their take.
The specific models affected are MacBook Pros with the GeForce 8600M GT manufactured between May 2007 and uh, last month. You know you've got a crappy video card if you see screwy or scrambled video, or worse, no video, even if the computer is turned on. Apple will fix any Nvidia graphics card problem for free within two years of the original purchase date. If you've had to pay to get the problem fixed before, Apple will give you a refund.
The fact that Nvidia apparently misled Apple is deeply disturbing, especially as they counter the Inquirer's continuing reports about defective chips. If you've had video problems with MBP, raise your hand please.
Here's what Nvidia says for their side:
We've worked diligently with Apple, as we have done with all of our customers and partners, to analyse notebooks and determine the cause of such problems.
Our analysis shows that a failure in an Apple MacBook Pro notebook is remote. However, Apple, like other OEMs, decides on their own how to handle their warranty and repair programs, based upon their own quality standards.
Bottom line, we stand by our products, thus the reason why we set aside such a large reserve, and we have and will continue to work closely with Apple and their customers.