Nvidia brings out Shield tablet aimed at hard-core gamers

22 Jul 2014

Hardware maker Nvidia has revealed plans to release an 8-inch tablet computer called The Shield that is aimed solely at hard-core gamers. The device comes with its own game controller and stylus.

The Shield will launch on 29 July in the US and 14 August in Europe.

The device will cost US$299 for a 16GB Wi-Fi only model and US$399 for a 32GB model that will connect to 4G LTE networks.

The Shield will be powered by Nvidia’s Tegra K1 processor and runs an Android operating system.

It has expandable storage in the form of a microSD slot that supports cards up to 128GB.

World’s first tablet just for gamers

“Tegra K1’s 192 dedicated graphics cores have the same Kepler graphics cores we’ve built into our GeForce GTX graphics cards and our Tesla supercomputer accelerators,” according to Nvidia’s Matt Weubbling.

“As a result, this is the first tablet with the muscle to handle the technologies that make PC gaming great. It lets us bring PC gaming technologies – like tessellation – to mobile devices for the first time. And it lets developers bring powerful, next-generation gaming engines, like Epic’s Unreal Game Engine 4, to tablets for the first time.”

Nvidia has built its GameStream technology into the tablet, which allows gamers to stream games from the cloud or from their PC.

A pre-loaded Shield Hub app gives gamers access to more than 400 games optimised for the tablet, including Trine 2, War Thunder, The Talos Principle, Portal and Half-Life 2.

The Shield, Nvidia claims, is also the first mobile device to integrate Twitch, allowing gaming fans to stream live game play to friends worldwide.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years