NVIDIA is working on a new SHIELD Controller and SHIELD Remote
In 2015, NVIDIA released its first SHIELD TV, an Android TV set-top box. Nearly 4 years later, the SHIELD TV is still one of the best media players on the market thanks to NVIDIA’s software support and the SHIELD’s hardware. The SHIELD TV’s Tegra X1 SoC—the same chip found in the Nintendo Switch—can easily handle the highest-end Android games from the Google Play Store. If that’s not enough for you, you can also play ports of high-quality games from other platforms thanks to the SHIELD-exclusive library, emulate older consoles for an all-in-one retro gaming experience, or stream current titles through GeForce Now. The base NVIDIA SHIELD Android TV package includes a SHIELD Remote, but if you spend an extra $20 you can get the SHIELD Controller as well. Since the SHIELD TV was last refreshed in 2017, we’ve waited to see if NVIDIA will release an updated model. While we currently can’t confirm the existence of a new SHIELD TV, we have found evidence that NVIDIA is working on two new SHIELD TV accessories.
A custom ROM developer looking through NVIDIA’s latest public source release discovered two new device code-names, “stormcaster” and “friday.” The code explicitly refers to “stormcaster” as a SHIELD controller and “friday” as a SHIELD remote. Upon further inspection, “Stormcaster” is a SHIELD Bluetooth HID controller that also accepts input over USB. On the other hand, “Friday” is a SHIELD Bluetooth HID remote that does not support USB input.
For reference, the controller and remote that shipped with the 2015 SHIELD TV, code-named “foster,” were internally referred to as “blake” and “jarvis” respectively. The controller and remote that are currently available with the 2017 SHIELD TV, code-named “darcy,” are internally referred to as “thunderstrike” and “pepper” respectively. Thus, we believe that the “stormcaster” and “friday” code-names refer to new SHIELD TV accessories.
We reached out to NVIDIA for comment and received the following statement:
It’s fairly standard practice for various concept codenames to appear in codebases. Those references remain even when it becomes unlikely that the concept ever goes into production. We can’t comment on which codenames refer to product concepts that are active vs which ones are inactive, as it can be fluid. However, I can confirm that none of the codenames below refer to products that have launched publicly.
Since the code-names appeared in public source release, NVIDIA doesn’t deny their existence. However, they cannot confirm if the code-names are for products that are planned for production. If NVIDIA really is working on a new SHIELD Controller and SHIELD Remote as the code suggests, then I would wager they’re for a refreshed SHIELD TV product and not the current model. However, I currently cannot confirm whether NVIDIA plans on refreshing their SHIELD TV line. If we find evidence that suggests otherwise, we will let you all know.
Featured image: The 2015 NVIDIA SHIELD Android TV