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Nvidia Shield: from Tegra 4 to portable game console

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Nvidia kicked off CES in a big way by announcing an all-new handheld console, Project Shield. The console runs Android and can also stream games from your PC. It's powered by Tegra 4 — another new Nvidia product — that'll be shipping in smartphones and tablets later this year. Will the Shield and Tegra 4 turn Android into a gaming powerhouse? Follow along right here.

21 updates and 1841 comments below.

Apr 07 10:42a

Nvidia's Shield console can now stream games over the web

Promised two weeks ago and delivered today, Nvidia's big April software update for Shield is highlighted by the introduction of remote game streaming. Until now, the Android-powered handheld was capable of playing graphically intensive games that were being processed by and streamed out of your home PC, but it required that both devices be on the same network. Though still in beta as of now, the remote version of Nvidia's GameStream offers to do the same wherever you are, provided there's a...

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Mar 25 3:00p

Nvidia Shield price drops to $199 alongside new features

We've said it before and we'll say it again: though Android may not be a great game platform, Nvidia is trying its damnest to make the platform better. Today, that means a host of new updates for the company's Nvidia Shield portable game console, updating the system to Android 4.4 and adding the ability to stream PC games outside your house — even waking your PC from sleep and letting you remotely log in, presumably after jumping through a few hoops to set up a compatible system.

The other...

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Dec 02 7:34p

Nvidia could give Shield the power of a gaming PC with Grid streaming technology

About a year and a half ago, the excitement around cloud gaming all but disappeared. Sony bought GaikaiOnLive collapsed, and Nvidia's GeForce Grid partners failed to materialize in the United States. The idea was that you could give any old smartphone or tablet limitless gaming power by actually running the games on server farms, then stream them like a YouTube video. It seemed like an idea ahead of its time, but it actually worked — and now, Nvidia appears to be testing the waters of cloud...

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2:05p

Nvidia Shield update lets you stream PC games to your TV in 1080p

When Nvidia released the October software update for its Shield handheld, it said that the ability to stream PC games at 1080p and 60 frames per second was coming — and now it's finally here. The handheld's December update brings the ability to stream 1080p, 60 fps PC games to your television using the device's console mode and a wired ethernet connection; previously the Shield could only stream PC games at 720p. And a number of big titles already officially support the feature — you can play...

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Nov 29 2:21p

Black Friday 2013: Nvidia Shield for $249.99 with free carrying case

If the only thing stopping you from purchasing an Nvidia Shield was the Android gaming handheld's $300 price tag, now is the time to buy. Starting today for Black Friday, and running through Cyber Monday, you can get the powerful portable for just $249.99.

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Oct 28 9:00a

Nvidia Shield update adds key features to the portable game console

Nvidia's Shield just leveled up. Today, the Android gaming handheld is getting a huge over-the-air update that tackles several of the device's biggest problems. First off, the system's getting an update to Android 4.3 with all the little fixes and features that brings. The Shield's GameStream feature is out of beta, and PC streaming is more reliable and seamless than ever before. But third and perhaps more importantly, Nvidia's figured out a way to make loads more Android games compatible...

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Aug 01 8:00a

What's inside Nvidia's Shield gaming handheld?

How, exactly, did Nvidia manage to cram the guts of a game controller and a smartphone into a portable console? Teardown and repair site iFixit has the answer: it pulled apart the Nvidia Shield to show you the guts of the handheld.

You can see how the cooling system works, pulling air in through the front lip of the device, and using an actual honest-to-goodness fan to exhaust it out the back. iFixit also discovered that quite a bit of room inside the bulky console is devoted to three hefty,...

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Jul 31 12:00a

Nvidia Shield review

<p>Last summer, I bought an iPad 3. I convinced myself I&#8217;d use it for everything: showing off wedding photos, reading all those neglected articles I save to Pocket, and as a second monitor for my laptop. </p> <p>The only time I <em>actually</em> pick up the iPad, sadly, is to play video games. Perhaps the saddest part is that my iPad isn’t a very good game system. It&#8217;s bulky, the touchscreen controls are pretty crappy for navigating 3D worlds, and the graphics are merely okay. But where “real” game systems like the PlayStation Vita <a href="http://www.theverge.com/2013/2/22/4016898/ps-vita-one-year-after-launch">are struggling to build a library of game titles</a>, the iTunes App Store continually tempts me with addictive, artsy new games. I wanted the best of both: the physical controls to explore immersive worlds, and a store to convince developers to build them. I wanted the equivalent of a PlayStation Vita running iOS. </p> <p>Then, the next best thing came along: <a href="http://www.theverge.com/2013/1/7/3845282/nvidia-announces-project-shield-handheld-gaming-system/in/3609443">Nvidia announced the Shield at CES</a>. For $299, the graphics giant promised the most powerful hardware we&#8217;d ever seen in a portable console, running stock Android, with what basically amounted to a built-in Xbox 360 controller at the helm. Nvidia even promised it would stream games from my home gaming PC. <a href="http://www.theverge.com/2013/1/10/3857384/editorial-nvidia-project-shield-right-on-time/in/3609443">I was jazzed</a>. Six months later, the Shield showed up on my doorstep.</p> Continue reading »

Jul 21 10:46a

Nvidia Shield will ship on July 31st after delay from 'mechanical issue'

Nvidia is announcing that its Shield gaming handheld will ship on July 31st, after the release was pushed back due to an unspecified mechanical issue. The Shield, a handheld that plays Android games and can stream PC games from Steam, was originally due out on June 27th — but problems with a third-party component forced Nvidia to delay its release. Nvidia still hasn't said what caused the issue, but with a new release date the company appears to have sorted out the problem.

"We want to thank...

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Jun 26 3:00p

Nvidia delays Shield gaming handheld to July, citing 'mechanical issue'

Just last week Nvidia announced a June 27th release date for its $299 Nvidia Shield gaming handheld, but that date didn't last for long. Today, the company informed us that it's discovered a mechanical issue with the Steam-streaming, Android-game playing device, and has delayed the portable's launch until sometime in July while it sorts out the issue. The company wouldn't specify what the problem was, only that there was a mechanical failure with a third-party component of some sort. "We want...

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Jun 20 9:00a

Nvidia lowers Shield price to $299 ahead of June 27th release date

Since its unveiling at CES 2013, Nvidia's Shield portable console has undergone quite a few revisions. When the company put its Tegra 4-powered Android device in gamers' hands at PAX East in March, it found enough dissatisfaction with its ergonomics to perform a significant physical redesign. Since then, Shield demo units have toured the globe, from Computex in Taipei to E3 in LA, and now Nvidia's addressing the other major concern expressed by those who've tried it: the price.

Shield p...

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May 17 9:00a

Nvidia Shield pre-orders start today, shipping in June for $349

Nvidia is starting orders of its new Android-powered handheld console, Shield, today. After announcing a $349 price tag and June release date earlier this week, the gaming company has decided to move its pre-order date forward from Monday 20th. The handheld can be pre-ordered directly from Nvidia, or from retail partners including Newegg, Gamestop, and Canada Computer — Micro Center will be accepting pre-orders shortly.

Shield will arrive with access to Google Play (and the full suite of...

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May 14 9:00a

Nvidia Shield gaming handheld priced at $349, pre-orders begin on May 20th (preview)

The biggest surprise at the 2013 Consumer Electronics Show is about to go on sale. The Nvidia Shield, a five-inch portable Android game console that can also stream PC games from a nearby gaming computer, will cost $349 at Newegg, GameStop, Micro Center, Canada Computers, and Nvidia.com when pre-orders begin May 20th. Devices ship by the end of June. Technically, you can actually pre-order one today if you sign up on Nvidia's "notify me" webpage — and there's nothing to keep you from doing...

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Jan 10 1:47p

Nvidia's Project Shield: right on time

Two days ago, my esteemed colleague Vlad Savov told you why Nvidia's Project Shield will fail. It's a thought-provoking piece, and one you should read.

I just happen to disagree with practically every point he makes.

Project Shield is a strange beast, to be sure, a device that feels a little out of place. Like Vlad says, it's a gaming handheld, a device in a category historically dominated by Nintendo to such a degree that every competitor has more or less failed — except Sony, whose...

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Jan 08 10:38p

Nvidia CEO confirms there will be more Shield consoles in the future

Nvidia CEO Jen-Hsun Huang has confirmed that the upcoming Project Shield handheld console will be the first of many devices from the company. Speaking with CNET, Huang said that future versions of its Tegra processor will debut in Nvidia gaming devices. The CEO then ruled out the company building a smartphone or tablet and implied that there was a need for a compelling handheld console, saying "I wouldn't build a smartphone or tablet because Asus [and other hardware makers] are doing a...

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Jan 07 11:53p

Nvidia hints that Project Shield will cost a bundle of money

Nvidia already told us that we shouldn't expect the 5-inch Project Shield handheld gaming system to be a loss-leader, but tonight the company's really driving that message home. On the official Nvidia blog, SVP Tony Tamasi explicitly says "we’ll make our money by selling the device to gamers." He continues on:

This differs from the razors-and-razor blades approach, which isn’t just used by Gillette and Schick. Printer-companies use it, as well, making money from highly profitable ink. So...

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2:35p

Nvidia Project Shield hands-on video preview

It didn't take long for the first bombastic announcement of CES 2013, with Nvidia's clamshell Project Shield handheld console stealing the Sunday limelight. This morning I got to grips with this wild new Android portable, gleaning an early idea of the green team's future as a consumer hardware vendor, plus a better idea of the performance of the all-new Tegra 4 system-on-chip. Our first hands-on video, photos and impressions can be found below.

So, what to make of Nvidia's Shield? Well,...

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1:11p

Nvidia's Project Shield: five years in the making, five years too late?

A gray-haired but still leather-clad Jen-Hsun Huang ascended the CES stage last night to reveal what may well end up being the most audacious product announcement of this year’s show: Project Shield. The culmination of half a decade’s worth of research and development, Shield is a portable gaming console with no lesser an ambition than the root transformation of the way we play games. With it, Nvidia is hoping to do for gaming what Netflix did for movies or the Kindle achieved with e-books....

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12:59a

Nvidia Shield handheld streams users' PC games, connects to Steam and Big Picture Mode

Nvidia has just announced at its CES press conference that its new Shield handheld gaming device can connect to users' home PCs to stream and play games. To work, users need an Nvidia Kepler-based graphics card (GTX 650 or GTX 660M or higher), which utilizes a piece of software in GeForce Experience. Games streamed to the device must also support controller input, though Nvidia says some games without controller support can be played by mapping control buttons to the Shield's inputs. The move...

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12:33a

Nvidia announces Project Shield handheld gaming system with 5-inch multitouch display, available in Q2 of this year

Nvidia has just unveiled a new handheld gaming system called Project Shield. Project Shield is powered by the Tegra 4 processor and can play console-quality games while still providing a mobile experience. The processor is capable of pushing 4K resolution video over HDMI to external displays. It includes advanced sound processing that Nvidia says rivals Beats Audio-equipped laptops, and a 33Wh battery that provides five to ten hours of play time or 24 hours of HD video playback. It features a...

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Jan 06 11:56p

Nvidia unveils Tegra 4, 'world's fastest mobile processor'

Nvidia has just announced its next-generation Tegra 4 processor for smartphones, tablets, and notebooks. The Tegra 4, like its predecessor, features a quad-core processor along with a fifth, low power, core to save battery life. Although it retains the 4-plus-1 setup of Tegra 3, Nvidia's fourth-generation chip is built on an all-new architecture. The company's CEO Jen-Hsun Huang says that Tegra 4 is the world's fastest mobile processor, surpassing everything currently on the market. Nvidia...

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11:53p

Nvidia rebrands GeForce Grid, shows off server hardware and cloud gaming prowess

Nvidia has just announced the Nvidia Grid, an updated version of its GeForce Grid cloud gaming architecture that was originally announced in May of last year. The Grid is a rack-based server that can support up to 24 individual racks at once with a total 240 GPUs and 200 teraflops of processing power. The company boasts that this is the equivalent processing capabilities of 700 Xbox 360s.

In addition to showing off a few photos of the Grid servers, complete with internal shots of the rack's...

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