Nvidia made a lot of waves during January’s CES with what it initially called “Project Shield”, a very intriguing Android-powered mobile gaming console, but between then and now there wasn’t a lot of hype-building on the world-renowned chip maker’s part.
But the gizmo is finally back in the spotlight and this time it’s a “project” no more. Advertised simply as Shield or Nvidia Shield, the thing will go on sale in June in North America, via a number of familiar US and Canadian retailers, including Newegg, GameStop and Micro Center.
Priced at $349, the console will also be up for pre-orders straight from Nvidia, through a special webpage set at shield.nvidia.com. But before anything, you’re probably wondering if this gadget is worth your time and hard earned buck.
Well, it depends. If you’re a compulsive gamer always on the run, it could well be. After all, it does run Android 4.2 Jelly Bean while sporting a decent flip-up 5-inch 720p display, quad-core Tegra 4 CPU, 2 gigs of RAM, 16 GB of on-board storage, microSD support, plus HDMI.
Android games remain however the console’s biggest flaw, as there aren’t many titles in Google Play to satisfy the thirst for action and mobility of most hardcore gamers. On the flipside, you can also stream certain PC games on Shield, so try to take that into consideration too before making your final decision.