Monday, January 7, 2013

Nvidia Shield - Portable Gaming Console

Nvidia has decided to take the mobile gaming fight even more seriously, and has just unveiled their Shield at CES 2013.

Using the brand new Tegra 4 (the latest and greatest in ARM chips from Nvidia, with a 4+1 Cortex A15 cores, and a new GeForce with 72 GPU cores), this Android mobile gaming machine will surely leave every other mobile gaming device in the dust.

Nvidia didn't take any chances with Shield. If you ask any game how a mobile console should be, they would surely tell you: give us a Xbox controller with a screen on top. And that's precisely what Nvidia did (Although I don't quite understand why they decided to put the digital cursor keys in the top left spot instead of the analog thumbstick.

As for the screen: we're talking about a 5" 1280x720 HD screen, that should be more than enough to keep you going. (And considering 5" FullHD screens are now popping up, one can expect the second generation of this console to offer one as well... when the time comes.)

Besides games, you can also run any Android App you want - as this Shield runs Android in all its glory.

But, it's games that this beast was designed to excel at: and it does that even better than you might think. Not only it can run Android games... but it can even run PC games, provided you have a PC with a GTX card. Just like OnLive games are processed "in the cloud" and streamed to your device; now you can do the same, locally. You can have your PC running the game, and streaming it in real time to your Nvidia Shield! Meaning... you can play your PC games anywhere around your house.

And if you don't have a powerful PC, you can still use Nvidia's GRID cloud gaming platform.

So... you won't have any trouble playing a PC game on your living room, streaming the game from your PC to your Shield, and from the Shield to your large screen TV... in resolutions up to 4k!

This Shield might also become a serious contender for the "secondary screen" controlers like the one Nintendo is pushing for with their new Wii U. With a big player now in the game, do you think it will take long for PC game developers to start taking advantage of the Shield? It can do everything the Wii U can - and more!

And it should even beat it in one other important aspect: battery life. The Shield comes with a 28Wh battery - that's a battery larger than the one you find in the Nexus 10 tablet - and should allow for "enough" time playing around without worrying it will run out in the worst possible moment.

The Shield should arrive in Q2 (in US/Canada), and the price is promised to be "competitive"... Dare I say, something int the $299 price range - or is that too much wishful thinking?

[tabela via Anandtech]

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