NVIDIA have just announced their plans to bring an Android-powered handheld gaming unit to market in the near future. Unveiled at CES today, Project Shield is a handheld gaming unit that runs vanilla Android (yay!) with NVIDIA’s own Tegra 4 doing all the computing work. Google apps are included as well as access to the Play Store, and of course, NVIDIA’s own Tegra Zone gaming store.
NVIDIA says the unit — which features a 33Wh battery — will play games with PC graphics for 5 to 10 hours, and can playback video for 24 hours. That huge battery will also be charged by the industry standard MicroUSB connector.
The screen is 5-inch at 1280×720 and is completely multitouch capable. The device itself is in a clamshell form-factor with the screen folding on top of what essentially looks like an XBOX 360 controller. Storage won’t be much of an issue with the inclusion of a Micro SD slot — expandable up to 64GB.
PC Game Streaming…
Another impressive feature of Project Shield is its ability to stream PC games from a user’s PC to the handheld unit. The technology behind the wireless gaming is a variant on the normal Wi-Fi standard meaning it will work on existing Wi-Fi networks.
Project Shield will connect to Steam and stream a user’s games directly to the handheld unit.
There’s an obvious question to be asked about this feature: what about lag between the handheld unit and the PC? Well NVIDIA says it has been working hard to ensure lag is at a minimum so as not to affect the user experience.
No word yet on a release date or price. If it’s announced, we’ll let you know!