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NVIDIA Portable Announced

NVIDIA unveils Project Shield, a handheld android gaming device powered by a 72-core NVIDIA GeForce GPU/Quad-core A15 CPU. This will include support for playing PC games on NVIDIA-powered systems as well, as outlined on this page:

Project SHIELD gives you the power to wirelessly access your GeForceŽ GTX-powered computer from the comfort of your couch. Play your favorite PC games, including great titles from Steam, on a full-size game controller with ultra-low latency thanks to Project SHIELD's game-speed Wi-Fi and the fast performance of GeForce GTX 600 GPUs.

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39. Re: NVIDIA Portable Announced Jan 8, 2013, 06:14 jdreyer
 
Dev wrote on Jan 7, 2013, 17:02:
jdreyer wrote on Jan 7, 2013, 14:27:
Dev wrote on Jan 7, 2013, 14:13:
To me, the most interesting thing is the CPU/GPU. Could that be used on a potential steam box to have good gaming performance and cheap cost?

There's no version of Steam that runs on ARM procs, and there are no Steam games that run on ARM procs, either. I'm pretty sure any Steam box would stick with some form of Intel CPU coupled with an NVidia/AMD GPU.
Those are barriers, but they aren't insurmountable. Valve could make a version that runs on arm. Devs could submit things that run on win, mac, linux, AND tegra/mobile, that would be fairly decent attraction to get more customers to steam. Or they could contract with nvidia to do a special integrated tegra chip on a card (hugely expensive I know, to get custom stuff like that, but valve could afford it if they really wanted to. I think it would be a waste though).

Oh, for sure, it's a possibility. It just seems like the Steam box is something that will come out in the short term, while Steam adopting Android games and having an android version of Steam seems like something that will be more long-term. It took them 3 years to release a Linux client, so I imagine that is the kind of timeframe we'd be looking at for Steam on Android. Don't get me wrong though, I'd love to see my Steam version of Defender's Quest running on my Galtab.
 
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38. Re: NVIDIA Portable Announced Jan 8, 2013, 04:35 Jerykk
 
Seems kind of pointless. If it primarily plays mobile games, why not just buy those games for your phone? The people who play such games don't care enough about them to buy a device exclusively for them. Hell, the handheld console market has been shrinking, not growing. Just look at the failure of 3DS and Vita.

As for streaming PC games on your controller, why would anyone do that? Let's see, I can play a laggy, low-res version of my games on a tiny screen or I can play lag-free, high-res versions on my 27 inch 120 Hz monitor. Hmm, tough choice. If I want to play my games with a gamepad, I can just plug one in to my PC.

I don't know what audience Nvidia is trying to cater to with this.
 
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37. Re: NVIDIA Portable Announced Jan 8, 2013, 01:25 Asmodai
 
Hey nVidia, get back to making fucking graphics cards that don't burn themselves out on your homebrewed auto-overclock "boost" solution after driver updates. That would be fucking peachy you pack of c#nts...  
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36. Re: NVIDIA Portable Announced Jan 7, 2013, 19:26 Tom
 
Have any of you actually tried gaming on Android? There are a whole bunch of controller-enabled games on Google Play right now. You can hook up a USB controller, use Bluetooth, use a controller designed specifically for Android or not. There are even controllers for Android that have built-in phone holders, and things that mate controllers with phones. And there are phones with built-in controllers such as the Xperia PLAY.

References:

http://technabob.com/blog/2012/08/08/gameklip-android-ps3-controller/
http://buy.thegameklip.com/
http://www.powera.com/moga
http://lifehacker.com/5929865/diy-phone-mount-for-your-ps3-controller
http://www.sonymobile.com/us/products/phones/xperia-play/

This is a hot area and NVIDIA is jumping on it. Maybe it'll work out, maybe not, but this isn't some crazy thing out of nowhere. People have been doing it for a while and Android is only going to get more and more powerful. Already gaming on a Nexus 7 (Tegra 3) is pretty impressive, especially for a $200-250 multi-purpose device.

Then there is the OUYA which is going to promote controller-enabled games for Android.

Lots of stuff coming along these lines.
 
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35. Re: NVIDIA Portable Announced Jan 7, 2013, 18:00 Panickd
 
Dev wrote on Jan 7, 2013, 17:02:
jdreyer wrote on Jan 7, 2013, 14:27:
Dev wrote on Jan 7, 2013, 14:13:
To me, the most interesting thing is the CPU/GPU. Could that be used on a potential steam box to have good gaming performance and cheap cost?

There's no version of Steam that runs on ARM procs, and there are no Steam games that run on ARM procs, either. I'm pretty sure any Steam box would stick with some form of Intel CPU coupled with an NVidia/AMD GPU.
Those are barriers, but they aren't insurmountable. Valve could make a version that runs on arm. Devs could submit things that run on win, mac, linux, AND tegra/mobile, that would be fairly decent attraction to get more customers to steam. Or they could contract with nvidia to do a special integrated tegra chip on a card (hugely expensive I know, to get custom stuff like that, but valve could afford it if they really wanted to. I think it would be a waste though).

There is a version of Steam that runs on Android. And Android runs on ARM. Granted it's entirely for the Steam PC/Mac game catalog but they could easily change that so that it could deliver games centered around an ARM based platform.
 
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34. Re: NVIDIA Portable Announced Jan 7, 2013, 17:02 Dev
 
jdreyer wrote on Jan 7, 2013, 14:27:
Dev wrote on Jan 7, 2013, 14:13:
To me, the most interesting thing is the CPU/GPU. Could that be used on a potential steam box to have good gaming performance and cheap cost?

There's no version of Steam that runs on ARM procs, and there are no Steam games that run on ARM procs, either. I'm pretty sure any Steam box would stick with some form of Intel CPU coupled with an NVidia/AMD GPU.
Those are barriers, but they aren't insurmountable. Valve could make a version that runs on arm. Devs could submit things that run on win, mac, linux, AND tegra/mobile, that would be fairly decent attraction to get more customers to steam. Or they could contract with nvidia to do a special integrated tegra chip on a card (hugely expensive I know, to get custom stuff like that, but valve could afford it if they really wanted to. I think it would be a waste though).
 
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33. Re: NVIDIA Portable Announced Jan 7, 2013, 16:07 Krizzen
 
Holy shit. Curve ball!  
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32. Re: NVIDIA Portable Announced Jan 7, 2013, 15:38 Quboid
 
It does have Google Play access. It's an interesting product and I'd quite like to have one but I can't imagine I'd ever want one anything like enough to pay for one. It's probably more of a concept product to promote the Tegra SoC and its possibilities because I think that market is Nvidia's highest priority.

If they stuffed batteries in the handles, they could get excellent battery life. I suspect the additional weight and cost would make this prohibitive. Shame they got the D-pad and left stick the wrong way around.
 
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31. Re: NVIDIA Portable Announced Jan 7, 2013, 15:26 Crustacean Soup
 
Agent.X7 wrote on Jan 7, 2013, 14:38:
At no point while I am at home do I want to play a game with great graphics on a screen the size of my cell phone. Hell, I wish my Vita did video out to my TV.

It has HDMI, I was thinking part of the reason for this would be so that people who don't have their PCs hooked up to their TV could play PC games on the big screen...
 
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30. Re: NVIDIA Portable Announced Jan 7, 2013, 15:21 DangerDog
 
Would be cool - maybe, if it didn't render the server computer useless for any other task.

I would rather have a device like this that hooks up to a TV, and also supports media streaming when not being used to play games.
 
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29. Re: NVIDIA Portable Announced Jan 7, 2013, 15:18 Tim Collins
 
To me it seems like a half baked idea because its still called Project Shield and not a real product name telling us this is a year away at least, aka not something going to be released in 2013  
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28. Re: NVIDIA Portable Announced Jan 7, 2013, 14:38 Agent.X7
 
Cutter wrote on Jan 7, 2013, 12:14:
Fat, awkward, heavy, latency issues, etc. Why would I play on a tiny screen when I don't have to? Why would I want a controller in the first place when I don't need one for 99.9% of games? How soon will it be incompatible with newer Nvidia stuff? Probably inside a week to force people in the upgrade cycle. No thanks!

Yeah, I don't get it. If I want to play a game like AC3 with a controller, I will A) Hook up my wireless 360 controller to my PC to play it on my 27" monitor or B) Play it on my PS3 on my 46" TV.

At no point while I am at home do I want to play a game with great graphics on a screen the size of my cell phone. Hell, I wish my Vita did video out to my TV.

On the go? Yeah, at least my Vita has Uncharted, Assassin's Creed, and Lego Lord of the Rings. I don't want to play some crap Android game, and this is certainly not going to stream my PC games while I am in a train or on the road.
 
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27. Re: NVIDIA Portable Announced Jan 7, 2013, 14:27 jdreyer
 
Dev wrote on Jan 7, 2013, 14:13:
To me, the most interesting thing is the CPU/GPU. Could that be used on a potential steam box to have good gaming performance and cheap cost?

There's no version of Steam that runs on ARM procs, and there are no Steam games that run on ARM procs, either. I'm pretty sure any Steam box would stick with some form of Intel CPU coupled with an NVidia/AMD GPU.
 
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26. Re: NVIDIA Portable Announced Jan 7, 2013, 14:13 Dev
 
To me, the most interesting thing is the CPU/GPU. Could that be used on a potential steam box to have good gaming performance and cheap cost?  
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25. Re: NVIDIA Portable Announced Jan 7, 2013, 13:51 BobBob
 
I need to start a business creating obese gamer belts. They will be in high demand in the near future.  
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24. Re: NVIDIA Portable Announced Jan 7, 2013, 13:31 jdreyer
 
The Half Elf wrote on Jan 7, 2013, 13:13:
Wish they'd go with a 360 controller setup with the sticks. Worst problem I have with the PS3 controller is that 1) it's tiny 2) the sticks are just too damn close to each other.

Yeah, nice call. I hadn't noticed that the stick and d-pad were reversed on the left side vs. 360 controller. Not sure why they'd do that since this can also be used on PC where users would already be used to the 360 layout.

While they say it's also a wireless controller for your PC, they're only advertising it for 600 series graphics cards, so it's not clear if it works with earlier cards, although I can't imagine it's tied to a specific graphics card for compatibility.

This is intriguing hardware, but I'm not sure what the interest/market would be for something like this. It seems unlikely you'd be able to ship the millions of units to makes something like this viable, especially with no killer app. Also, what's the price for something like this? Since a 7" tablet goes for about $170, I imagine this (with it's custom hardware) would probably go for $250?

And lastly, WILL IT PLAY ANGRY BIRDS??!?!!A!
 
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23. Re: NVIDIA Portable Announced Jan 7, 2013, 13:30 Beamer
 
jdreyer wrote on Jan 7, 2013, 13:18:
This is interesting. The Unreal Engine 3 has been ported to Android so we could see some decent games, but there aren't many games currently (Dungeon Defenders, Bad Day, Demon Score, and Wild Blood were all I could dredge up). The main problem here is that mobile developers aren't going to develop for the power of this hardware since it will limit potential sales if it won't run on a normal phone or tablet.

I understand why they went with Android (battery life and "free" O/S) but it would have been MORE interesting if they had gone with one of those ultra low power Intel CPU instead of an ARM. Then if they'd worked with MS to get a mobile version of Windows with DX9/11 graphics, there would be a HUGE stable of cheap pre existing game software to drive sales.

Devs won't start making Android games with better input, either. Assuming this makes it to production, or any of the Android controllers do, there will be what, a few hundred thousand in the wild? Maybe a million or two?

Compared to touch-screen, it's negligible. It's nearly impossible to make a game good with a touch screen and a controller, since they're so different, and a smart dev chooses the controller 100% of the time.

It's a step in the right direction, but early adopters expecting controller-based Android games will find it lacking for a long time. Selection will be limited longer than the lifespan of anything in development today. It's really a door opener more than a useful product.

Which is why the secondary function of streaming from Steam makes this more useful than the other concepts being shown.
 
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22. Re: NVIDIA Portable Announced Jan 7, 2013, 13:18 jdreyer
 
This is interesting. The Unreal Engine 3 has been ported to Android so we could see some decent games, but there aren't many games currently (Dungeon Defenders, Bad Day, Demon Score, and Wild Blood were all I could dredge up). The main problem here is that mobile developers aren't going to develop for the power of this hardware since it will limit potential sales if it won't run on a normal phone or tablet.

I understand why they went with Android (battery life and "free" O/S) but it would have been MORE interesting if they had gone with one of those ultra low power Intel CPU instead of an ARM. Then if they'd worked with MS to get a mobile version of Windows with DX9/11 graphics, there would be a HUGE stable of cheap pre existing game software to drive sales.
 
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21. Re: NVIDIA Portable Announced Jan 7, 2013, 13:13 The Half Elf
 
Wish they'd go with a 360 controller setup with the sticks. Worst problem I have with the PS3 controller is that 1) it's tiny 2) the sticks are just too damn close to each other.  
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20. Re: NVIDIA Portable Announced Jan 7, 2013, 12:55 NegaDeath
 
Not something I'd use but credit to them for trying to branch out.  
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