About four years ago, NVIDIA unveiled a new portable gaming product called “NVIDIA SHIELD”, since then SHIELD has become a brand for their Android-based gaming products. It was a portable gaming device that worked a bit like a Nintendo DS, but it ran Android and had some great graphics for the time – remember this was 2013. Since then, NVIDIA hasn’t really done much with the device, and has focused on their Android TV set-top box and their NVIDIA SHIELD tablet lineup. However, some new FCC documents show that we may be seeing a new NVIDIA SHIELD Portable in the near future, but then again maybe not.
It’s easy to be a bit skeptical about this listing with the FCC because the listing shows a controller that is nothing like the controller that debuted with the new SHIELD TV. There’s no specs mentioned, seeing as the FCC is mostly looking at safety standards and wireless compliance when they are approving or denying a new device, but the listing does show that 5GHz WiFi support will be available. There also appears to be a micro SD card slot, a HDMI port and finally a headphone jack – while many smartphones are losing the 3.5mm headphone jack, the SHIELD Portable isn’t.
Now, the fact that the controller doesn’t match the design that is present on the latest SHIELD TV’s controllers isn’t the only reason why people are skeptical about this device actually launching. It’s the fact that this device went through the FCC back in July of last year. Many documents were only published yesterday, but it was approved about 6 months ago. Which likely means that NVIDIA has shelved the product, or has just abandoned it altogether. Typically, companies will send their new product to the FCC for approval shortly before it launches – and in some cases, even after it has been announced. So the FCC is typically looking at final hardware (although probably not final software) when they are approving devices like the NVIDIA SHIELD Portable 2. While it would be great to see a new Portable hit the market, sadly, this may never land on store shelves, or even virtual shelves.