Making good on their last week’s promise, Nvidia has begun shipping the powerhouse gaming-centric Shield Tablet to tech-savvy consumers in the United States and Canada. Meanwhile, Europeans can pre-order the beefy Android-based 8 incher via “many top e-tailers”, with an ETA allegedly set for August 24.
We’ve been warned, and teased, and warned again. At long last, Nvidia’s Shield Tablet has gone official, unfortunately a couple of days too late to surprise in any way. But regardless of the mystery being shattered to pieces prematurely, you have to admit the chip maker’s sophomore gaming device effort improves last year’s hesitant rookie stab at the tricky market by leaps and bounds.
Nvidia entered the Android device manufacturing scene quite abruptly last year, taking us all by surprise with a pioneering Shield handheld game console design and pretty bold Tegra Note tablet.
With a much beefier follow-up right around the corner, you’ll probably understand Nvidia’s desperation to get rid of remaining first-generation Shield inventory. Then again, the chip makers have been throwing discounts, updates and various deal sweeteners at potential Shield buyers for months now, so the latest promotion is just another day at the office for them.
Nvidia’s stubbornness to go after the Android tablet veterans and continue its road-opening gaming-focused efforts have been thoroughly documented of late, with benchmark test results and FCC certifications. But if you needed extra proof the chip maker means business, here it is.
It’s no big secret that Nvidia doesn’t know the meaning of the word failure and is thus set on following up the fizzling Shield handheld game console with an upgraded second-gen gizmo. But apparently, there might be more on the horizon for the chip maker as far as gaming devices are concerned.
For better or worse, Nvidia’s Shield experiment is praise-worthy, regardless of sluggish sales and overall middling critical reception. Granted, the handheld console is years away from revolutionizing the mobile game market, as Nvidia probably envisioned, but a sequel is in the works and leaked info makes it look pretty amazing. As long as it’s legit.
Google’s crowd-pleasing Nexus project may well end soon, but speculation is piling up in support of a majestic swan song. Does “Flounder” ring a bell? A sketchy report pegged it as the internal codename of a forthcoming Nexus 8 not long ago, and now the hearsay is gaining credence.
Nvidia did its damnedest to turn the Shield handheld game console from a tech oddity into a box-office hit and trend-setter, but at the end of the day, all the discounts and software updates were simply not enough.
Basically acknowledging there were a couple of things wrong with the Shield handheld game console and its age made it an impractical buy at $250, Nvidia rolled out a series of extra features to the gizmo, also shaving a cool $50 off its list price.
They may have fallen off the radar the past few months, what with Microsoft snubbing CES and everything, but fret not, the next-gen Surface tablets are still coming. Confirmed by company officials in “multiple aspect ratios and sizes”, these shall once and for all make or break the Windows-powered slate line.
We knew NVIDIA would be announcing new mobile processors at the CES and true enough the company opens with unveiling a few models. First to be introduced is the 192-core GPU-based Tegra K1 processor that offers Unreal Engine 4 and OpenGL 4.4 support.