Android (and PC) gaming fans who pre-ordered Nvidia’s Shield handheld have reason to rejoice. After a lengthy delay caused by a “mechanical issue” with third-party parts, the company announced today that units will ship July 31.
The Shield has undergone a number of changes since its Consumer Electronics Show reveal earlier this year. In response to consumer feedback, Nvidia lowered the price to $299 shortly before the Shield’s release. The company also worked to improve the device’s look and feel before launch; the finalized hardware includes improved button, trigger, and d-pad responsiveness, a beefier screen hinge, and reduced streaming game latency for Nvidia graphics cards that support the functionality.
Billed as a console-cum-game streamer, Nvidia envisions the Shield as a sort of showcase for the company’s newest mobile chipset, Tegra 4. It’s unsurprising, then, that the device’s internals aren’t unlike those of a high-end smartphone: in addition to the quad-core reference CPU clocked at 1.7 GHz, the Shield packs 2GB of RAM, a 5-inch, 720p display, Bluetooth 3.0, a gyroscope and accelerometer, and even GPS. Nvidia’s operating system of choice – stock Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean – is an even clearer indication that the company hopes to galvanize the developer community with Shield ahead of a broader Tegra 4 rollout.
Those who pre-ordered the Shield should receive a shipping confirmation in the next couple of weeks. Any folks interested in placing an order can do so at Nvidia’s website.