This summer we’ve been trying to work out what’s next for NVIDIA and its Android hardware, focusing on what new Shield products might be coming. We saw something at the FCC that might be a new Shield handheld console, and there’s been talk of a Shield tablet, as well. Yesterday, the tablet part of that equation started coming into focus, with a render depicting hardware that borrowed its look from last year’s Tegra Note. But what about the handheld with the integrated controller? And what of specs could we look forward to from that tablet? Answers may be at our door, as a new leak sheds a lot of like on NVIDIA’s plans.
Let’s start with that Shield 2: it’s not here. Despite the thorough nature of this new leak, there’s not a peep about any such device. Instead, we see the Shield Controller, a wireless gamepad that’s almost certainly the mystery device whose FCC paperwork had us talking about a possible Shield 2. There’s even an explanation here for the presence of those WiFi bands we saw in the FCC docs (one of the factors that had us leaning away from the idea of a stand-alone controller), using WiFi Direct for low-latency communications. The hardware resembles the controller part (minus screen) of the original Shield, and is tipped to sell for about $60.
The Shield Tablet, on the other hand, still seems like it’s happening, and according to this info will launch next Tuesday, July 22. It should be an eight-inch slate with a 1920 x 1200 resolution, run an NVIDIA Tegra K1 SoC (natch), and have 2GB of RAM. Both WiFi-only and LTE versions should be coming, and a built-in stylus is expected. According to these docs, the 16GB WiFi version will sell for about $300, while the 32GB LTE variant will go for more like $400. NVIDIA will also have a $40 cover accessory that acts as stand for the tablet. Sales should get started in North America on July 29, followed by August 14 for Europe.