The 4K version of the Apple TV comes out tomorrow. So to get a jump on prospective buyers, Nvidia is making an announcement about its own 4K streaming box today: it’s introducing a new configuration of the Shield TV that will sell for $179, the same price as Apple’s latest streaming box.
This isn’t a huge change for the Shield TV. The streaming box currently sells for $200 and includes a remote and a game controller, since the device is also meant to be used to play games. The new configuration of the Shield TV includes the same amount of storage, 16GB, but it won’t come bundled with a game controller — just a remote.
That means Nvidia is squarely targeting the streaming crowd here. It’s not a bad idea for a device that supports 4K HDR, but that just isn’t what the product is best for. In his review last year, my colleague Dan Seifert wrote that the Shield TV is “best for gamers,” and that if you’re not interested in gaming, “you’re better off saving money and going with an Amazon Fire TV or Roku Ultra.”
So, while the price drop makes for some nice competition, it may not be low enough to turn the Shield TV into the most compelling option for people just getting into 4K.
The new configuration is available for preorder today, but won’t start shipping until October 18th. Nvidia will also keep around the $200 configuration with a controller, which seems like the better option given that it’s not that much more expensive and lets you get even more use out of the Shield TV.