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Nvidia Shield Review

The Nvidia Shield is Nvidia's entry to offer products based on the Google Android platform. It's a series of products consists of two Android TV devices and one Android tablet. In this article, we are going to review the Nvidia Shield Android TV base model.

Before I review this product, let's talk a bit about what it can do and why I have bought this product. The Nvidia Shield plugs into the your TV (hopefully big screen). It is based on Google Android, so theoretically it can do everything that your Android SmartPhone or Android tablet could do. And basically, it let you use it on a big screen TV.

I bought the Nvidia Shield so that my son could play Skylanders Trap Team on the big screen TV. Skylanders Trap Team required a very strong Android tablet, which my two aging Android tablets could not handle. Rather than buying a Nvidia Shield tablet, which had only an 8" screen, I decided to get the Nvidia Shield to use as a game console.

Nvidia/Google strategy is to deliver and sell content to you through this TV box, which is what every other players in the market is doing--Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, etc. You buy this set-top box and you can stream movies and shows (for a fee) to your big screen TV via Google Play, Netflix, Hulu, etc.

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Package (Unboxing)

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Cost

The Nvidia Shield Android TV costs $199. If you are going to use it as a game console, then it is the most inexpensive game console on the market. But the game selection could be limited compared to dedicated game consoles that are currently available. But Android is a wide-open platform, so this arena could improve.

If you want a YouTube box for your big screen TV, then it becomes quite a good deal. YouTube is integrated and you can watch anything you want on your big screen TV with very little effort.

If you want to use it to play all the premium movies and TV shows, then $199 might be pretty steep compared to other dedicated boxes for $100 or less. Plus, you'll still have to pay rental fee and monthly subscription fee.

If you want to use it as an computer for your big screen TV, it's not a bad deal. You'll need to find a compatible wireless mouse and keyboard. The Nvidia Shield is probably cheaper than a laptop that has HDMI output. And there may be less maintenance headaches compared to a computer.

Nvidia Shield has built-in Chromecast. So if you have wanted a Chromecast, you can get this device to have the best of both world; it basically shaves $35 off the price. But if you have already bought a Chromecast, then you spent $35 extra if you get the Nvidia Shield, too.

If you want to use the Nvidia Shield with the intention to meet all of the above goals, then it becomes a great deal. There aren't very many other similar products that can compare to the Nvidia Shield at this level. And the Nvidia Shield has the best Android graphics processor that Nvidia provides.

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