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Last-minute delay hits Nvidia Shield console

Last-minute delay hits Nvidia Shield console

Nvidia's Project Shield, due to launch today in North America, has been delayed for a month due to a mechanical failure blamed on third-party components.

Nvidia has had to delay the launch of its first-ever games console, the hand-held Android-powered Shield, as it works to address a mechanical failure in the final production models.

First formally unveiled at the Consumer Electronics Show earlier this year, Shield is a serious departure for the company: rather than relying on hardware partners buying its chips or graphics boards, Nvidia is building and selling its own retail product. Designed and built in just one year, which resulted in 14-hour workdays and a prototype finished just 10 days before deadline, the device mates a flip-up display to an Xbox 360-like control pad for on-the-go gaming.

Designed both as a retail product and to showcase Nvidia's Tegra 4 processor, the Shield hand-held is powered by Google's Android platform. Unlike rival Android gaming devices like the Ouya, however, it has a trick up its sleeve: the ability to stream games from a desktop or laptop equipped with a Kepler-based GeForce graphics processor. It's this, rather than the casual games available natively on Android, that Nvidia hopes will sell the device.

Plans to release the console in the US this month have, however, come to naught, with the company being forced to push back the launch until some time towards the end of July. 'Some quality-assurance testing has just turned up a mechanical issue that we're not happy with,' Nvidia's Jason Paul explains in a blog post on the matter. 'So, while we announced last week that Shield will go on sale this Thursday, we've taken the hard decision to delay shipping until next month.'

The fault, which has not been detailed, is being blamed on a third-party mechanical component rather than Nvidia's own engineering. 'We're working around the clock with the supplier to get it up to our expectations,' claimed Paul. 'We apologise to those who have pre-ordered Shields and to all those who are waiting for them to go on sale. But we want every Shield to be just right.'

Nvidia has planned to launch the device in North America first, then tailor its offering for international markets. As a result, the delay will have a knock-on effect to the console's as-yet unannounced availability in the UK.

Those disappointed by the delay can take solace in a price reduction: the originally-planned $349 launch price was recently dropped to $299, to better help Nvidia's nascent entry into the console market compete with the like of Sony's PlayStation Vita.

10 Comments

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Shirty 27th June 2013, 17:44 Quote
I really want a go on one of these. But I'd never buy one, even if it cost £20. It just wouldn't get any use and my daughter would have destroyed it within a week.
jinq-sea 27th June 2013, 17:48 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shirty
It just wouldn't get any use and my daughter would have destroyed it within a week.

Contradiction central! ;)
AlienwareAndy 27th June 2013, 17:51 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shirty
I really want a go on one of these. But I'd never buy one, even if it cost £20. It just wouldn't get any use and my daughter would have destroyed it within a week.

$299 is a joke. It would be worth considering if it were more like $99.

Apparently you can do what Shield does with any old Android tablet, so $299 for one with a 5" screen is kinda lame.

If I have my gaming PC on and using power I'll game on it. I prefer 50" to 5" lol.
Shirty 27th June 2013, 17:54 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by jinq-sea
Contradiction central! ;)

* Clarification: It wouldn't get any use as a handheld console, more of a "generic object to be hurled at the television screen when I put Nuzzle & Scratch on when it's Balamory time."
miller 27th June 2013, 18:03 Quote
"NVIDIA" Stop arsing around with things like this and concentrate on making some decent bl***y drivers :(
Alecto 27th June 2013, 18:11 Quote
It's never NVidia's mistake, it's always someone else's, just like the crappy overheating and solder-destroying chipsets. It's interesting that same problems weren't encountered when using components from other manufacturers.
PingCrosby 27th June 2013, 20:51 Quote
Are there any games good enough on android to warrant buying one of these?
Baguette 27th June 2013, 22:04 Quote
Uhm...It may be just me, but I don't get this. At all.

Too bulky to be a tablet, with too small a screen. Besides, when my PC is on, I like to game on it directly? My desk is comfortable enough, I don't need a portable screen for my couch, especially at that price point.

I'd be interested to know if this genuinely interests someone.
rollo 28th June 2013, 12:52 Quote
I would not buy one similar situation to you why would I want to game on a 5inch screen when i can game on my main 27inch screen. Does not make alot of sence to me and if I wanted to play andriod games id buy a nexus 7 its alot cheaper and does the exact same thing.
Shirty 28th June 2013, 12:55 Quote
The biggest problem Nvidia will face is that it's not really all that complex to get a controller working with an Android tablet.
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