At long last, NVIDIA's next-generation gaming tablet, the Tegra K1-powered SHIELD Tablet, is now available to purchase from a variety of retailers. The following is a quick launch guide covering what you need to know on day one.
Where to Buy the SHIELD Tablet:
If you didn't pre-order an NVIDIA SHIELD Tablet, you can still purchase one from a number of online and physical retailers.
If you live in the United States, the SHIELD Tablet is available at Amazon.com, Best Buy, Fry's, GameStop, Newegg, Think Geek, Tiger Direct as well as several PC system builders.
On the official SHIELD website, NVIDIA also has a helpful search tool that allows you to locate the nearest SHIELD Experience kiosk if you would prefer to check out the device in person before purchasing one.
What Games are Already Available:
Developed to power both the latest Android games enhanced by its bleeding edge Tegra K1 processor and PC games running on a nearby rig via its built-in GameStream technology, the NVIDIA SHIELD Tablet can play hundreds of games out of the box.
For PC gaming, the SHIELD Tablet can handle resource-demanding blockbusters like Titanfall, Call of Duty: Ghosts, Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag and Batman: Arkham Origins to name a few of its growing library of GameSteam-ready PC titles.
While the new SHIELD platform is equipped to handle the thousands of games featured on Google Play, there a number of Android games that are specifically designed to take advantage of the raw horsepower of its 192-core Tegra K1 processor. Tegra K1-optimized games out now include Anomaly 2, Chuck's Challenge 3D: Reloaded, Dungeon Defenders Eternity, Half-Life 2, Portal, Pure Chess and Rochard with many more to follow.
All NVIDIA SHIELD Tablets come with the physics-based fantasy adventure, Trine 2: Complete Story, which couldn't be a better showcase for the graphical fidelity that can be achieved on Tegra K1.
What About Accessories:
The new NVIDIA SHIELD platform liberates the first-generation SHIELD's controller from its display, which gives gamers a tremendous amount of freedom in how and where they play their games.
The new wireless SHIELD Controller is lightweight yet sturdy and features built-in WiFi Direct technology that delivers lower latency than Bluetooth gaming controllers. If you're playing SHIELD on an HDTV, you can also pair up to four controllers with a single display if the game supports it. The SHIELD Controller is available to purchase separately for $59.99.
Other accessories that are available include a SHIELD Tablet Cover for $39.99 that both protects your device and doubles as a kickstand that can prop up your display.
While the DirectStylus 2 comes free with every SHIELD Tablet, you can purchase a second replacement DirectStylus 2 for $19.99 as well as a second replacement AC Adapter for $29.99.
What's the Difference Between the Two Versions of the SHIELD Tablet
While only the 16GB version of the NVIDIA SHIELD Tablet is currently available, a 32GB will be available soon.
Aside from the price difference—the 32GB model will cost $100 more than the $299 16GB model—the upcoming higher-end SHIELD Tablet features both WiFi and LTE support, instead of just WiFi.