Nvidia Shakes Up Gaming with "Project Shield" Console

Graphics processors maker Nvidia unveiled at Consumer Electronic Show (CES) 2013 its "Project Shield," a gaming controller / portable console powered by the blazing fast Tegra 4 processor and running on the Android Jelly Bean operating system. Looking similar to the PlayStation 3 DualShock 3 or the Microsoft Xbox 360, Shield features a 5-inch, 1080p display, a console-grade controller with buttons and analog sticks, up to 10 hours of battery life for gaming or up to 24 hours for HD Video playback, a GeForce CTX GPU, a swanky audio system "on par with" jamboxes, standard system internals and I/O including a micro SD slot, an HDMI port with 4k output, and an eight-inch headphone jack. Nvidia says Project Shield will be coming to the U.S. and Canada in the second quarter of this year.

What Else You Need To Know

  • Able to download Android games from Google Play and Nvidia’s TegraZone game store, Project Shield was demoed to play on Real Boxing and Assassin's Creed at the CES 2013 in Las Vegas.
  • Shield also plays PC games. Users can stream games from their PC to the console over Wi-Fi or Ethernet as long as the PC is equipped with an Nvidia GeForce GTX 650 or higher as well as an Intel Core i5 processor or greater.
  • Shield users can also stream games to their HDTV and play it using the Shield as controller.
  • Tegra 4 is claimed to be the world's fastest mobile processor, with CPU performance said to be 2.6 times that of the quad-core Tegra 3.

Other sources

Until now, NVIDIA has largely relied on supplying the processors for the final product of other OEM’s. With Shield, that tried and true model could change dramatically, and for the huge benefit of NVIDIA. - Rob Jackson, Phandroid  
We got our first chance to go hands-on with the device this morning -- our first hands-on with any Tegra 4 device, mind you -- and came away impressed. Beyond being a speedy handheld, the 5-inch LED makes high-def PC games look even more visually stunning. - Ben Gilbert, Engadget  
NVIDIA building Tegra 4 into an Android gaming controller / console, dubbed 'Project Shield'  

NVIDIA's hoping Shield will replace your average controller as well -- perhaps with that newly detailed Grid system? -- and company CEO Jen-Hsun Huang showed off its use in-tandem with a swanky LG 4K television on-stage, navigating through media without pause. He also gave us a taste of a game running on it (Blood Sword: Sword of Ruin) via NVIDIA's Tegrazone gaming store.

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It’s a pure Android device with no skin on top of it, but pressing a “shield” button drops it into a game environment. It doesn’t have any proprietary interfaces, with HDMI, micro-USB, microSD slot, 3.5mm audio jack.

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