Nvidia announces a brand new Nvidia Shield TV device with 4K support and Steam streaming capabilities, and also unveils a revamped version of its GeForce NOW streaming service.
While the most-talked about aspect of Nvidia‘s CES 2017 keynote was the reveal of a brand new Mass Effect: Andromeda gameplay trailer, that wasn’t the only thing that the tech company had to show. In addition to talk of Nvidia‘s new self-driving car system as well as its plans for AI, the company also announced a brand new TV device, as a follow up to the Nvidia Shield that was released in 2015.
This new Nvidia Shield TV, which is an Android-based set-top box, looks the same as its predecessor. However, under the hood, it’s packing several new features that should appeal to gamers, such as the ability to stream 4K HDR gaming from a PC. Just like Valve’s own device, the Steam Link, the new Nvidia device will allow users to stream their library of Steam games and play them on their TV via the Shield TV’s Steam app.
The new Nvidia Shield TV, which will cost $200 when it goes on sale in North America and “select European regions” later this month, also features Google Assistant (support will be added “in the coming months”) and 4K video streaming. Amazon Video content can be streamed in 4K, while there are also plans for 4K HDR streaming support for both Netflix and YouTube, which should be good news for gamers wanting to get their Let’s Play fix in 4K.
During the keynote, Nvidia also unveiled a new version of its GeForce NOW game streaming service. Separate from the Shield TV’s Steam streaming capability, this streaming service is described as “basically a GeForce gaming PC on-demand,” by Nvidia. It will let anyone on a PC or a Mac stream games that are powered by Nvidia’s high-end Pascal PCs, as the company hopes to give everyone with a computer access to powerful video games even if they cannot afford to buy their own high-end PC or Steam Machine to run then.
However, GeForce NOW isn’t cheap, as it costs a whopping $25 for 20 hours of play. While support for games like Fallout 4, Dark Souls 3 and ARK: Survival Evolved could make the service an alluring premise for those with a lot of money to burn and have been disappointed by the libraries of other streaming services, that cost means that it’s unlikely to topple comparative game streaming services like Sony’s PlayStation Now which allows for streaming on Windows PCs and PlayStation consoles.
How Nvidia will justify that price to its already somewhat cash-strapped target market and whether it will bring the price down is yet to be seen. GeForce NOW will launch in early access in March, so Nvidia will have a chance to address any and all feedback following the service’s full launch.
The Nvidia Shield TV 2017 is presumed to release sometime this year.