Did someone ask for an Android handheld that looks like an Xbox 360 controller with a 720p 5″ screen hanging off it? Well NVIDIA has you covered with Shield.
It’s an ugly looking thing but this Tegra 4 powered handheld can also stream Steam games from your PC with “minimal latency”. It can also output to a display of your choice via an HDMI cable.
The big mystery for all of us is the price tag. Without any headlining game support, I cannot see this piece of hardware being very successful above the $249.99 price tag. Yes, it has access to the Google Play Store but that’s not enough to sustain the device in my opinion. I can’t even think of a single “must play” title that originates from the Google Play Store.
There is an opportunity for this “Shield” to live as a high powered emulation machine. SNES, Sega Genesis, CPS2, Neo Geo, PlayStation One and whatever else has an emulator running on Android should work splendidly on this.
AnandTech spent some time with the handheld. Apparently it’s surprisingly light and the Steam streaming works well.
The Shield is scheduled to debut in Q2 of 2013.