Shield 1.2 update optimizes and enhances

— 8:00 AM on June 15, 2015

If you're one of the lucky folks to already have Nvidia's Shield TV box in your living room, then your device should be eligible for an update right about now. The 1.2 update to the Shield software brings a number of improvements, according to Nvidia, some of which are described rather vaguely. Here's the list of changes:

· Share your pictures in 4K on Ultra HD TVs with the Photos & Videos app

· Delivers enhancements for SD card auto-move setting

· Optimizes streaming experience for Google Play Movies and Netflix

· SHIELD Accessories Upgrade for SHIELD Remote for snappier response

· Adds notifications for low battery on SHIELD Remote

· Delivers enhancements for NVIDIA GameStream (requires update to GeForce Experience v2.25 beta or later)

I just cracked open the box to my Shield review unit last night. Most things already seemed to work reasonably well. I did have one network disconnect while streaming a show, and I noticed a bit of banding in the snow north of the wall with Google Play Movies, so perhaps the update will help with those things.

Nvidia also points out that  a number of new entertainment apps are coming to the Android TV platform, including sports streaming apps from Fox and CBS. That's in addition to some heavy hitters like Netflix and HBO Go. Looks like Google's living-room push may succeed—unlike, you know, Viiv and Windows Media Center.

Several new games have made it to Android TV, as well, including Machinarium and Shield exclusives Doom 3: BFG and Trine 2. A new version of A Game of Thrones HD has added support for 1080p resolutions on the Shield box, as well.

Now, if I can just coax my family to use the Shield instead of our venerable (and quite nice) HTPC, then we should have some real-world impressions of the device to offer before too long.

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