Nvidia’s handheld game-streaming device, Project Shield, is being delayed because of a few “mechanical” problems.
Shield’s critics say the ambitious project doesn’t make a great deal of sense for the price tag. The Android-based device’s main function is to stream PC games. Great, but it has to be on the same Wi-Fi network as the host PC, the game has to be compatible, and you generally just have to stay pretty close to your computer.
Android games can be played whenever you like but, as early reviews of the Ouya box are highlighting, the Android market is too fragmented. Playing Grand Theft Auto on your phone is fine but bump this up to a bigger HD screen and the quality begins to suffer.
NVidia isn’t exactly competing with Sony and Nintendo. Its device is more of a complementary intrigue to dedicated PC gamers while Sony’s Vita and Nintendo’s DS, as well as the Wii U controller, seem to understand their markets. But for someone interested in portable gaming, many people already have a good-enough Android phone for those games, and the console makers have dedicated platforms with their own exclusives. On the cheap, and outside of your wi-fi network.
With a modded Android device you can even easily sync up PS3 controllers.
Despite the above, some Nvidians are quite buzzed about the product, even if the rest of us aren’t sure why. It will be interesting to see the market response.
That market response should kick off some time in July, when the first shipments will go out. A day before the scheduled launch, Nvidia said it had discovered a “mechanical issue” in the device.
This is the second time that Nvidia has had to tinker with Shield. It recently cut the price from $349 to $299.