It wasn’t too long ago, actually less than a month ago, that NVIDIA rolled out an update to the NVIDIA SHIELD that flipped the switch, turning the gaming console into a smart home command center. With the latest Experience Upgrade 6.2, it’s back to offering even more sources of entertainment and ways to spend/waste your time on this weekend. Plus, it adds even more capabilities to control your home from your couch.
The NVIDIA SHIELD already has a plethora of streaming services available to its users. That, of course, doesn’t mean it couldn’t do with more. For example, you may have already enjoyed Amazon Video on it, but now you can also stream Amazon Music from your Android device to the large screen. VUDU now supports HDR10 format for a wider range of colors and, together with Plex, can now be controlled through voice via Google Assistant.
There are also new sources of content joining the team. Perhaps the biggest is the Movies Anywhere app that lets you enjoy content from Sony Pictures Entertainment, Twentieth Century Fox Film, Universal Pictures, Warner Bros, and The Walt Disney Studios, whether they were purchased on Amazon Video, Google Play, Apple iTunes, or Vudu. If you have a thing for Bollywood, the new Hotstar app gives you access to shows and movies from India. As for games, you can now play Metal Gear Solid 3 HD directly on the device or stream Destiny 2 from your compatible PC using NVIDIA GameStream.
But the NVIDIA SHIELD is more than just an entertainment box now. With support for both Google Assistant and Samsung SmartThings, it can become the nerve center of your smart home as well. You can now, for example, control your Ecobee thermostat or see your Logitech camera on a much bigger screen. You can even indirectly control LG smart appliances now, thanks to the integration of LG’s SmartThinQ platform with Google Assistant.
While Android TV at large has more or less failed to take to the market by storm, the NVIDIA SHIELD has become the poster boy for what it is truly capable of, with enough active support from manufacturers. Hopefully, NVIDIA will continue to support the device, especially since it hasn’t exactly put out a new model yet.