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Nvidia Shield TV 2019: What it needs to do to beat the Apple TV

The Nvidia Shield TV was one of our favourite streaming boxes when it first launched. But two years on the entertainment hub is looking a little old and could do with a refresh.

Luckily, if recent rumblings are to be believed, that’s exactly what’s going to happen this year. Here’s everything we’ve heard about and want from a new Nvidia Shield TV 2019.

Nvidia Shield TV 2019 release date

A new Nvidia Shield TV hasn’t been formally announced yet. But given the company’s past release strategy it would make sense for Nvidia to release an updated model.

The first generation Shield TV launched in 2015. The second generation Shield TV then followed it in 2017. That sets a very nascent update cycle for a new Shield TV streaming box every two years. We stress VERY loose.

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Nvidia Shield TV 2019 price

An unconfirmed product can’t have a price, but we’d expect it to be just shy of £200. The second generation Shield TV 2017 retails for £189, which is pretty standard for a streaming box. The Apple TV 4K sells for an equivalent £179.

Nvidia Shield TV 2019 specs and rumours: What we want to see

Details about the new Shield TV are few and far between, but that doesn’t mean there’s no information out there.

The latest hit the cyber highways this week. Specifically, fresh rumblings of a new Shield TV 2019 appeared after a device that looked suspiciously like it appeared on the Google Play Developer Console. The device was codenamed “mdarcy”, a tag that is alarmingly similar to the Shield TV 2017, which had the codename “darcy”.

Specific details were thin on the ground, but the listing suggested the fabled Shield TV 2019 will run Android 9 Pie, which is great news.

The only other semi-legit looking rumour we’ve seen broke in March when the folks at XDA Developers spotted what looked like listings for a new Shield TV controller and remote, codenamed “Stormcaster and “Friday”.

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Details were again scarce, outside of the fact the products accept inputs via USB as well as Bluetooth, but the codenames similarity to the 2017 Shield TVs controller and remote, add further credence to a new model being in the works.

Sadly neither rumour referenced the biggest upgrade we’re clamouring for: the use of Nvidia’s fabled X2 chip. The X1 chip used in the 2017 Shield TV is still good – so much so that Nintendo opted to use it in the Switch. But it’s beginning to show its age.

It’s a key reason the Switch only does 720p when used in handheld mode, rather than 1080p. It’s also not quite up to playing a lot of GeForce Now titles in 4K. This is why the current Shield TV 2017 caps out at 1080p when gaming, despite being able to output 4K video content.

We’d really like the Nvidia Shield 2 to come with Nvidia’s rumoured X2 follow up – which is also rumoured to be set to power a more powerful variant of the Nintendo Switch – as a result.

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