Here’s the contents of the email I just received.
Today, this year’s hottest portable gaming device sheds the “project” moniker and officially becomes NVIDIA® SHIELD™! Since you signed up for SHIELD updates, you’re the first to know, and can be the first to own one. SHIELD is only available to U.S. and Canadian residents.
Since its announcement at CES 2013 earlier this year, SHIELD has gone through finishing touches like tweaking the buttons and joysticks, optimizing the thermal design, and enhancing software for a more intuitive, comfortable, and lag-free gaming experience. It’s not just the most powerful portable gaming device, it’s the most powerful Android device ever created.
SHIELD runs the latest Android Jelly Bean OS. It’s also powered by the NVIDIA Tegra® 4 mobile processor, clocked up to 1.9Ghz, and paired with 2 GB of RAM and 16 GB of onboard storage (expandable with a microSD card slot). The 5-inch 720p HD retinal touchscreen serves up high-resolution eye candy, while the integrated stereo bass reflex speakers pump out loud audio. And a sizable battery rated at 28.8 Watt Hours means you’ll enjoy a whole lot more gaming, videos, music, and web browsing.
We’re preloading SHIELD with two awesome Android games—Sonic 4 Episode II THD and Expendables: Rearmed. Of course, you can download loads of Tegra-enhanced games through NVIDIA TegraZone™ or directly from Google Play. And, for all you PC gamers out there, SHIELD will connect to your GeForce® GTX-powered desktop to stream your PC games through our lag-free WiFi technology. PC streaming will initially launch as a BETA feature with support for a number of top Steam games, and gamers will receive a free software update once the official release is available.
As a thank you for being a loyal SHIELD enthusiast, we’re giving you a chance to pre-order your SHIELD before the general public—for $349!
Quantities are limited, so you’ll want to move fast. SHIELD is only available to U.S. and Canadian residents.
And here’s the pre-order page.
It seems that Nvidia set the price point right at the top end of “reasonable” to me. Whilst it’s way out of the China handheld league, it also promises to deliver a lot more than those Chinese machines can. As I excitedly read the email on my way out of work and began reasoning with myself that pre-ordering was a good idea, it wasn’t until the end that I noticed everyone but America and Canada are thus far excluded. Well forget it then! Didn’t want one anyway!
Anyone got their pre-order in yet?
While most of us are probably waiting to see what the S7800 has to offer, here come JXD with a new handheld that probably isn’t going to impress many people. The S5110B is an incremental upgrade to the S5110 which adds dual analog (are they real analog? no idea! are they implemented properly? probably not!) and the same AmLogic MX dual core processor already found in the S7300.
Forgive me for the pessimism but I’m sure I’m not alone in growing tired of these JXD and Yinlips machines. It could be that they got it right in this one, but if they did it’ll be nothing but a fluke. I’m beginning to think that for a flawless Android gaming experience the best bets are going to be Ouya and Shield, and that’s unfortunate. Maybe when (if?) RockChip follow through on their promise of becoming a “more open” company and team up with a well established and respected manufacturer we could see the “perfect” device come from China, but until then I’ll probably be giving these things a miss.
If anyone’s confident enough to give this thing a try then, as usual, you can head on over to Willgoo for some more pics and to place a pre-order.
Hey everyone. When I first started this blog it was simply for something to do when I was bored at work, but 2 years on when WordPress has long since been blocked at work we’re still here – and the reason for that is twofold. Firstly, it turns out I quite enjoy it, and secondly – seeing that people actually read the blog and even better, talk about some of the posts makes me think it’s worth it. All of you lot are the reason the blog is still here. Thanks very much for that. Unfortunately, the spam messages that get held in my moderation queue have reached critical mass. To give you some idea, since swapping the blog to my own host 6 days ago I’ve had nearly 500 messages go into the moderation queue and all but about 4 have been spam! As you can imagine, I probably end up accidentally trashing some genuine comments along the way and that troubles me! So from now on, if you want to comment here I’m afraid you’re going to have to register first. I understand that that’s an annoyance and I expect to take a hit on the genuine readers that want to comment, but at the moment I can’t think of a better way to sort it!
So there it is. If you’d like to register (I’d be very grateful if you did!) just hit the register link at the top of the menu on the right (or click here). Thanks for reading the blog and thanks to every genuine reader that’s taken the time to post a question or a statement, join in a discussion or even to criticise an article – I value it!
Just this minute I received an email from the Project Shield subscription, and for anyone who didn’t sign up but is interested to hear what they have to say – here it is.
We’re getting closer to the launch of our NVIDIA® Tegra® 4-powered Project SHIELD portable gaming console, so we thought you’d like to get a sneak peek into the manufacturing process.
The photo you see below shows the production mold that’s used to craft the ergonomic casing that houses Project SHIELD’s high-powered components: Tegra 4, 5-inch 720p HD retinal touchscreen, Stereo Bass Reflex Speakers, WiFi, accelerometer, gyro, a massive battery, and more.
To create the casing, we inject a polycarbonate material into the RHCM (Rapid Heat Cycle Molding) tool at 10,800 PSI and 300 degrees Celsius. We use a polycarbonate mixture comprised of 90% Sabic 500ECR-739 PC and 10% glass. This material and injection molding process ensures a sturdy yet lightweight casing that will deliver hours of gaming with no fatigue.
The IbenX GamePad generated a bit of interest when it was shown off at HKTDC, now Willgoo have managed to snag a sample unit of the Quad Core handheld and have kindly filmed a few demo videos for us. The 7″ machine is powered by AllWinner’s A31S SoC and will probably be released in about a month’s time. The videos below show off Tekken 3 for the PS1, Mario Kart for N64 and the native Android game Dead Trigger. It looks as though there is a custom launcher sitting atop Android 4.1 which you can see at the beginning of the 1st video.
You might notice that the blog looks a little different, and it’s possible that some things are broken as well (youtube links for example). That’s because the site has moved to a new host and it turns out that moving the old site across isn’t quite as straight forward as it could be! I’ll be looking to fix everything I can in the next few days, but for the time being please update your bookmarks – the blog can now be found at obscurehandhelds.com!
It was less than 12 months ago that Rikomagic released its single core AllWinner A10 HDMI stick – a mini Android PC housed inside a tiny little plastic box with a HDMI plug on it. Now, 11 months later, those ‘powerful’ A10 processors are long since obsolete as we clamour for faster speeds, more cores and higher benchmark scores. Ever willing to oblige, our friends in China have dutifully managed to cram all that fresh new horsepower into the same tiny little plastic box and the web stores are about to explode once again with a thousand variations of the same tiny little computer.
One of the first to be recognised, thanks to Liliputing, is the Tronsmart T428 which was in pre-order status for a very long time – but is finally available to buy for $99 from Geekbuying. In true Chinese style, Tronsmart have just released the MK908 which is pretty much identical but in a different shell and costing $9 less at $89.99.
I hunted around for a while for something cheaper until stumbling across a new model by Ugoos called the UG007B. Our friends at Willgoo are offering a reduced price pre-order of the UG007B for the princely sum of $76.99 including shipping. No doubt the price will drop again over the next few months until we’re able to pick these up for around the $50 mark, but if you simply must have one now then this is the cheapest price I’ve found so far. If you’ve found another RK3188 stick cheaper somewhere else, do let me know!
Waiting for the 5 inch JXD S5800? So was I, but it looks like we might be waiting a while longer because JXD already have promo shots of a new quad core 7 incher.
RK3188 or A31? No-one seems to know for sure, but Skelton has spoken to the manufacturer who claim it’ll be RockChip. Let’s hope so.
iPega are better known for simple gadgets, bluetooth speakers, waterproof phone cases and just recently a bluetooth controller for smartphones. But it looks as though they’ve got bigger fish to fry these days, having recently shown off a prototype handheld at HKTDC. There’s not a lot to report as yet, no mention of it on their website, and only a brief mention of a Quad Core SoC – but if you fancy it, have a gander at the pics and video below.