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NVIDIA's Project Shield: an Android-based handheld with Steam Big Picture streaming

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The tech world has gotten itself into a lather over the bombardment of announcements coming out of Consumer Electronics Show. Here's one that's relevant to us, though: NVIDIA's Project Shield. While it may look like an HD screen bolted to a parody of an Xbox controller, the Android powered device is also capable of streaming your PC game library.

Powered by the also-announced Tegra 4 mobile chip, Shield promises a full Android gaming experience. That may sound a bit rubbish, especially if, like me, your Android device is almost exclusively a platform for running Canabalt. Still, it means the handheld will be able to play the upcoming Hawken Android, as well as the newly announced ArmA Tactics, a turn-based ArmA for tablet devices.

But perhaps the most interesting aspect of Shield is its ability to hook into Steam for local network streaming through Big Picture mode. NVIDIA's CEO, Jen-Hsun Huang, showed off the streaming during the presentation, playing Need for Speed: Most Wanted and Assassin's Creed 3 with reportedly little to no lag. The downside is it requires a Kepler-based graphics card inside your rig, meaning you'll need a GTX 650 or better to push pixels towards the device.

Project Shield offers a 1280x720 screen, but can output to a standard 4k TV. It's expected for release in "Q2", but there's currently no word on pricing. In the meantime, you can see the Shield's website (opens in new tab) for details.

A shiny new PC-playing toy. Any takers?

Thanks, Engadget .

Phil has been writing for PC Gamer for nearly a decade, starting out as a freelance writer covering everything from free games to MMOs. He eventually joined full-time as a news writer, before moving to the magazine to review immersive sims, RPGs and Hitman games. Now he leads PC Gamer's UK team, but still sometimes finds the time to write about his ongoing obsessions with Destiny 2, GTA Online and Apex Legends. When he's not levelling up battle passes, he's checking out the latest tactics game or dipping back into Guild Wars 2. He's largely responsible for the whole Tub Geralt thing, but still isn't sorry.