Nvidia: Early Shield sales ”have been great”

After Nvidia’s earnings report went up on Friday, Nvidia CEO Jen-Hsun Huang got on a conference call to discuss the results with analysts and journalists. Among other things, Huang revealed that sales of the Shield, Nvidia’s freshly released handheld gaming console, are off to a good start.

Here’s SeekingAlpha’s transcript of the comments Huang made:

SHIELD is doing great. The early reviews are fantastic. . . . Sales have been great. Everything that we shipped so far has sold out and – but we’re just starting to ramp production, we’ve shipped out to our partners only several thousand units, and so it’s still quite early to tell. But we’re expecting to do quite well with SHIELD.

Clearly, Nvidia didn’t go overboard with early production numbers. Keep in mind, though, that the device costs $299, isn’t available outside of the U.S. and Canada, and has only been shipping since July 31. Also, the Shield isn’t exactly a conventional gaming product. In light of those facts, the numbers quoted by Huang do sound quite encouraging.

Huang isn’t kidding about early reviews, either. Those that we’ve seen were quite positive overall, praising the device’s build quality and the wireless game streaming feature, which seems to work nicely despite bearing the "beta" label.

(Thanks to GamesIndustry for the heads-up.)

Comments closed
    • RachelHarg00
    • 7 years ago
    • Wildchild
    • 7 years ago

    How come TR hasn’t done any reviews on the SHIELD or Ouya? I’d love to see this. I apologize ahead of time if I somehow missed it or the reason was already explained.

    • kilkennycat
    • 7 years ago

    This very interesting and rugged fully-programmable controller can be used for a LOT more than gaming. Please think ‘outside the box’….

    [url<]http://www.suasnews.com/2013/06/23311/e3-nvidia-shield-controlling-ar-drone-2-0-over-610-feet/[/url<] Throw away the dedicated expensive base-controllers/monitors. May need inexpensive RF TX/Rx external add-ons for some RC applications.

      • Voldenuit
      • 7 years ago

      [quote<]Throw away the dedicated expensive base-controllers/monitors. May need inexpensive RF TX/Rx external add-ons for some RC applications.[/quote<] Yo dawg, I heard you like niches so I put your niche device within a niche. 😛 Seriously, the intersection of RC enthusiasts and handheld gaming enthusiasts isn't going to make SHIELD a mainstream product.

    • bittermann
    • 7 years ago

    Lets see what this quarter’s earning report says after all is said and done. Wonder if he will be whistling the same tune then? Remember the MS/Win8 song and dance.

    • jimbo75
    • 7 years ago
      • Anonymous Coward
      • 7 years ago

      Name another company that would have tried it in the first place.

        • jimbo75
        • 7 years ago
    • spigzone
    • 7 years ago

    HSA is dead.

      • chuckula
      • 7 years ago

      Oh man.. spigzone has flipped poles!
      Bring back the manic spigzone! The depressive spigzone is too laconic by half!

        • destroy.all.monsters
        • 7 years ago

        Eh, he’s like ssk without the fun factor.

          • Airmantharp
          • 7 years ago

          That’s the truth. I miss SSK.

            • destroy.all.monsters
            • 7 years ago

            You and me both.

    • chuckula
    • 7 years ago

    Tony the Tegra says that sales are Grrrrrrrrrrrrrreat!

    [More seriously, these won’t set the world on fire but at least Nvidia didn’t buy over a billion dollars in stock that will never sell ala Microsoft.]

      • HisDivineOrder
      • 7 years ago

      See, I get what you mean, but imagine the headlines if they hadn’t. “Microsoft only investing in small number of Surface units,” with an article essentially saying MS doesn’t expect to sell very many. Plus, economies of scale would mean the Surface tablets MAY (probably?) have cost even more per unit. And no sales is no sales, regardless.

      In hindsight, yes, it was foolish and well, yeah, they should have known how badly Surface would sell. The rest of the world knew. Every tech blog and Windows site was saying, “Hey, uhhhh… Surface is kinda a bad deal. Especially at iPad-like pricing.” But they got swept up in the “It’s got special metal and it’s got keyboard covers and wow, it’s got Windows,” and then one cold October day they were staring down at a tablet that was mostly like an iPad at a desktop where no programs could be installed and they looked around and realized…

      …they’d just been played. Furious (mostly with themselves), they joined the cacophony of hatred and piled on loathing for Surface, for Windows RT, then Windows Phone (yet again) and hell all of Windows 8 and tiles and Metro and screw primary colors, too, for good measure! And “Where the hell is Surface Pro?” everyone asked.

      But if they’d gone small on production numbers then they would have been slammed for not being confident it would sell similar to how they were slammed for not offering the Surface at very many retailers at launch.

    • indeego
    • 7 years ago

    “we’ve shipped out to our partners only several thousand units”

    A publicly traded company worth billions bragging about a few thousand sales? Color me impressed.

    • vargis14
    • 7 years ago

    I might have been interested but they do not support gtx 500 series cards! What is so different from 600 and 700 series cards that would make nvidia keep out the 500 series. Especially since its 720p

    Any ideas?

      • Benetanegia
      • 7 years ago

      600 and 700 (Kepler) have dedicated hardware-based h264 encoder. Previous models can only encode through CUDA (software). I would say that’s a significant difference and would make a world of a difference in regards to input lag.

        • swaaye
        • 7 years ago

        Could be….

        But then people are playing games remotely on tabletss with some other purely software methods. I can’t think of the apps offhand.

          • Benetanegia
          • 7 years ago

          I didn’t say it couldn’t be done, but perception is everything and Shield is supposed to be a device for enthusiasts. There’s no place for (much) lag in a device lika that, and Nvidia themselves have put a lot of emphasis in that front in all of their promotion pieces. Personally I prefer it that way and I have a GTX460.

          Services like Onlive suck badly because of the massive lag, and I really mean it, so the last thing I’d want is to shell out $300 only to find the most important aspect of the device sucks so bad on my hardware, with hundreds of miliseconds of lag. Awful. So Kepler only it is, and that way the choice was easy, I’m not getting it. At least for now.

          As an Android game developer myself, I like the idea of Shield a lot, because gameplay posibilities are enormous, something that it’s not posible on tablets and mobiles because of the clunky controls. I don’t think shield will sell enough to make it wortwhile to develop for it, but I’m hoping it opens up a market for that kind of device.

        • l33t-g4m3r
        • 7 years ago

        Nope, wrong. It does both, and the feature is called PureVideo which has been around since dx9 GF6, but only started being useful with the newer dx10 series.
        [url<]https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nvidia_PureVideo#The_fourth_generation_PureVideo_HD[/url<] Nvidia is artificially segregating it's product tiers with planned obsolescence, and you don't really need to use their software to get the same results. There are alternative encoders that you can use for the 4-500 series cards, not that I bother using them. First thing that comes to mind is dxtory and lav filters.

          • Benetanegia
          • 7 years ago

          If you are going to tell someone that is wrong, you could first try reading, both the post and your own link, that way you can avoid being awfully wrong…

          PureVideo is a decoder and we are talking about encoding here. Google NVENC wouldya? 😉

          Other encoders used to date on game streaming services are painfully slow for real time gaming.

          The main reason is that whether or not hardware takes place on the process (OpenCL, CUDA, Quicksyinc), the game is rendered on the GPU, then the framebuffer is sent via PCIe to main memory and then to the hardware encoder (which in case of OpenCL/CUDA is another 2 trips throught PCIe), then memory again and then via wifi to the display. Nvenc takes the framebuffer directly from the GPU, then encode it and sends it to main memory, saving 2 PCIe trips and 2 memory read and write cycles.

          CUDA/OpenCL based streaming is perfectly fine for movies, because throughput is as high or even faster than fixed-function based encoding and it doesn’t really matter if you see the image half a second later, but for gaming it’s justawful lag.

            • MadManOriginal
            • 7 years ago

            Being awfually wrong never stopped l33t before, why should it stop him now?

            • l33t-g4m3r
            • 7 years ago

            Pot, meet kettle. How’s Win8 out working for ya? Most popular OS ever? Under the hood improvements justify the GUI? HUH? HUH? AMIRITE? :p

            • l33t-g4m3r
            • 7 years ago

            Nevermind then. I assumed PureVideo did both, but it’s just decoding, and CUDA does encoding. AMD has unified decode / encode with gcn, and I assumed they and nvidia had similar capabilities in previous generations, but only with newer series apparently. Not that it would be impossible to encode games via CUDA, but it would require software to directly encode the framebuffer, which hardware companies with firsthand knowledge are usually the first to produce.

            Either or, it’s not like nvidia is introducing a completely new concept, they’re only improving an old one. Software encoders already exist, they just run slower. Hasn’t stopped anyone from using them. Plenty of people use FRAPS, Afterburner, dxtory, etc. I doubt Nvidia really has some “killer app” here, but it does make things more convenient.

            • Benetanegia
            • 7 years ago

            Fraps, Afterburner, dxtory et all are not nearly the same thing. You don’t play off the stream, you play normally and stream it for other people to watch it. Like I already said, that’s quite different, people watching don’t care if the stream has a delay of a couple hundred miliseconds because they are not playing.

            What Nvidia is doing is not novel per se and I don’t think anyone said that it was, but because of how the games are rendered and encoded in the same GPU, it’s superior and unique to date, much faster too. Can other services do the same? Sure, services like Onlive can still use Kepler or GCN so that the framebuffer goes directly to hardware encoders and make lag less of an issue, but then Kepler/GCN is again mandatory, only this time it would be on their servers. Nvidia created GRID for this purpose and is no coincidence it appeared on this generation.

            • Voldenuit
            • 7 years ago

            PS Vita will support screen streaming from a PS4. Some PS3 games have second screen functions for Vita but Sony has mandated that all PS4 games must support second screen or screen streaming for Vita.

            The added benefit of a Vita over the Shield (in addition to being $50-100 cheaper) is that many PS3/PS4 games have Vita versions that support crossplay/savegame syncing. So you could leave the house and keep playing your game, and it will save/update the progress when you come home and move to the console.

            The advantage of the Shield is that Android games tend to be cheaper than Vita games and both the device and the software are more open and hackable.

            I’m still not sanguine about Shield’s chances of success, though. The Vita is almost a steal for the hardware and still has not been a sales success.

            • Benetanegia
            • 7 years ago

            I wouldn’t put my hopes in syncing on the Vita, and I hardly would count it as a plus going into the future, because it’s going to be almost non-existent. It’s not going to happen the way people are thinking. Or at least I hope it doesn’t have the chance. I’ll explain myself: the kind of games that Sony has been promoting for PS4 and/or the ones people expect from a next-gen console, playing on a mobile device? NOT A CHANCE! I mean not even a very simplified version. It will be limited to very simple games or to a level/game mechanic that is only a tiny portion of the game*. Look at MGS5 or Watch Dogs, they’re going to have a huge open world, with lots of interaction and physics and so do nearly every other game, because that’s what people demand, and that will never happen on a mobile that has the power of last gen mobiles.

            Either that or they limit next-gen games in a way that would be posible to “reproduce” the entire experience in mobile, which is the nightmare I hope never hapens. That means no interaction at all with world elements and as few objects oscreen as posible, AKA last gen console gaming.

            * At which point, is it really a huge advantage over a standalone Android version of the same game? Something that is the same as the “synced version” except for the syncing? And of course nothing stops game developers from implementing a synced version for Android. Personally I just fail to see the benefit.

    • ronch
    • 7 years ago

    I’d rather get a Tegra 4 inside something like an Ouya II.

      • nico1982
      • 7 years ago

      Rumor is that Amazon is making an Android based home game console/set top box/home entertainment hub (Kindle Ice? :P). It might be your next best bet.

      To be honest, the same rumor want it running a Snapdragon, but who knows…

        • MadManOriginal
        • 7 years ago

        Locked down Android device? Do not want.

          • willmore
          • 7 years ago

          Judging from the success of CyanogenMod, Amazon has been very unsuccessful at ‘locking them down’.

      • smilingcrow
      • 7 years ago

      Yes, the Porsche Tagra 4 all drive car is neat and sells in similar number to the Shield.

    • BabelHuber
    • 7 years ago

    What’s the advantage of Shield compared to a regular Tegra 4 Android tablet with a connected gamepad again?

    Somehow I do not see any.

    But I see huge advantages in actually using a tablet as tablet, compared to using Shield as tablet replacement.

    So I fail to see the target audience for this device.

      • BabelHuber
      • 7 years ago

      I don’t understand the downvotes:

      When I connect a gamepad to a Tegra 4 tablet, I can do everything Shield can do.

      So seriously: What is the Shield’s selling point? Why should I prefer this device over a Tegra 4 tablet?

        • Deanjo
        • 7 years ago

        Most people with less then 4 arms could see the advantage.

          • BabelHuber
          • 7 years ago

          BS. I can even connect a gamepad to my good old Asus TF700T with Tegra 3. I can also connect the tablet via HDMI to a TV.

          This already works perfectly.

            • Deanjo
            • 7 years ago

            How’s that balancing of the tablet and a two handed controller working for you while on the bus, walking around, etc?

            • BabelHuber
            • 7 years ago

            So you are walking around on the streets with your Shield while gaming? I never thought of such a use case, because I personally keep my eyes open when walking, so I do not run into a bus/car/bicycle, but to each its own.

            Seems like you will get a Darwin Award soon BTW.

            But in a bus or train, I just put the tablet on my lap or anywhere else where there is enough space – the TF700T has an attached keyboard, you know.

            • Deanjo
            • 7 years ago

            I can chew bubblegum and walk at the same time as well (all that with only two arms). Who said anything about walking around on the streets?

            • BabelHuber
            • 7 years ago

            You said:

            [quote<]How's that balancing of the tablet and a two handed controller working for you while on the bus, walking around, etc?[/quote<] So do you want to use shield while walking around or not?

            • Deanjo
            • 7 years ago

            Sure, I can walk around in many areas such as in the house, outside, in the garage, etc.

            • BabelHuber
            • 7 years ago

            Why on earth should I walk around, playing games?

            But for those who do, you are right:

            If you want to walk around while playing on an Android device with a controller, the Shield fits your need.

            So here we found a single use case for Shield. Nvidia should focus the advertisment on this aspect, like:

            For years, it was impossible to walk around with a Tegra-device while playing a game with a controller.

            BUT NOW THESE TIMES ARE OVER – WALK ANYWHERE YOU LIKE WHILE GAMING WITH A CONTROLLER!

            ONLY ON NVIDIA SHIELD!

            • Deanjo
            • 7 years ago

            Have you ever watched a kid with a portable gaming device? They haul the things all over the place. The portable gamers are the primary target market for the Shield. Same target market as the Vita, Nintendo DS etc.

            • BabelHuber
            • 7 years ago

            So you are OK with your kids walking around while gaming?

            It seems more healthy for me to tell a kid ‘either you walk or you game’.

            It’s like walking around in the mountains: Looking around while walking is dangerous. Either you walk – and look at your way – or you look around – and stand still.

            At least this is what I learned at the army. Walking around while not looking at your way only leads to trouble – if you are lucky the seargent is punishing you for being stupid, if you are unlucky you fall from a cliff.

            • sirsoffrito
            • 7 years ago

            Dude, you are just being arbitrary so that you can argue with someone at this point. Clearly he doesn’t mean literally while walking around.

            • BabelHuber
            • 7 years ago

            As soon as I sit down, I can use a tablet with controller.

            Literally walking around while controller-gaming is the only advantage of Shield.

            • sirsoffrito
            • 7 years ago

            So you admit you can play games on your tablet, and you can carry a controller around as well. Why not concede that there might be a use case for people who don’t want to carry multiple items around for the same effect? Convenience can be a hell of an advantage to the right buyer.

            We get it, we really do. You don’t want one. Personally, I’m not going to buy one for the foreseeable future either. That doesn’t mean that other people won’t and that there isn’t a place for such a product in the market.

            • BabelHuber
            • 7 years ago

            But my point is exactly that there is almost no space for such a product in the market.

            For example not having to carry around a controller is no big deal: A Sixaxis controller is small and you need some bag to put in your Shield anyways.

            But in a bag I can also put a tablet and a controller without having to carry around much more.

            Of course there will be some niche for customers who want such a device. But I don’t see it becoming a real success.

            • Voldenuit
            • 7 years ago

            Well, there is a niche, and for its internals, Shield isn’t *horribly* priced.

            I will agree with you that I don’t think the dedicated Android gaming market is as big as nvidia thinks it is, but maybe they’re hoping to grow the market. With a PS Vita going for $199 this month, though, I don’t think a $100 price premium is going to help them, especially since Vita users will get synergies with PS3, PS4 and PSN+.

            • sirsoffrito
            • 7 years ago

            [url<]https://fbcdn-sphotos-d-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-ash3/993643_561198333943858_1445778609_n.jpg[/url<] This discussion is terminated.

            • MadManOriginal
            • 7 years ago

            There is a basic problem with that chart: human beings are not rational.

            • MadManOriginal
            • 7 years ago

            Given the way people use their phones, don’t be so sure.

        • l33t-g4m3r
        • 7 years ago

        The only real competition to this is the Razer Edge, and there’s a price difference, also size and battery life.

        I can see the purpose of this product, but it needs to come down to psp/GB/tablet prices to actually sell. I might think about buying one if it was $100 cheaper.

      • vargis14
      • 7 years ago

      Umm it streams your PC games along with the graphics quality a powerful desktop can produce that blows away any android game when it comes to 3d gaming. This was the main reason it was created
      That’s why you were DVOTED.

      On top of that it can play android games also

        • BabelHuber
        • 7 years ago

        Why shouldn’t I be able to stream PC games to a tegra 4 tablet?

        Unless Nvidia removes this feature deliberately, I see no reason why a tegra 4 tablet couldn’t do this also.

        Edit: Seems like even Tega 3 can do this: [url<]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TZ0oNRGgEG4[/url<]

          • Deanjo
          • 7 years ago

          So why buy a Tegra tablet then even? Just get a $99 Ouya if you wish to be tethered to a TV all the time.

            • BabelHuber
            • 7 years ago

            Where did I state that I am tethered to a TV all the time? If you want to be funny, at least stop making things up.

            Look, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see that a regular Tegra 4 tablet is superior to this Shield-nonsense:

            – The tablet can act as a tablet, which the Shield cannot.

            – OTOH the tablet can do everything Shield can do.

            • Deanjo
            • 7 years ago

            A desktop can do everything that a laptop can do as well however there are different use cases for both.

            • BabelHuber
            • 7 years ago

            LOL! Now it gets really stupid, is this just a failed attempt to troll?

            You can hardly carry a desktop around like a notebook. OTOH my tablet is as portable as this Shield-device.

            • Deanjo
            • 7 years ago

            Can you have both hands on your controller and carry the display at the same time?

            • BabelHuber
            • 7 years ago

            So you concede all the other points I brought up – or do you still insist on any other Shield-only feature than walking while controller-gaming?

            For gaming & walking, see above.

            • Deanjo
            • 7 years ago

            Nobody is arguing that you cannot do the same items on a tablet. Form factor and convenience is the main advantage of the system.

            • BabelHuber
            • 7 years ago

            No, we just figured out the only advantage for shield is controller-gaming and walking at the same time. As soon as I sit down, I also can use a tablet.

            • Deanjo
            • 7 years ago

            Also remember that by the time you buy a Tegra 4 tablet and controller you are also at double the price of what the Shield is. Meanwhile two kids can sit in the back of the car without having to figure out how to prop a display up and use a controller at the same time in the seat for the same price and each with their own device.

            • BabelHuber
            • 7 years ago

            Let’s see what the first Tegra 4 tablets will cost. I doubt it will start at $600. IIRC even the new Transformer Infinity with keyboard dock will only cost $500 ($400 without dock), and this is a highend 10″ tablet with 2560 x 1600 resolution.

            As for ‘figuring out’ how to use a controller:

            Plug it into the tablet via USB. Done.

            • Deanjo
            • 7 years ago

            The cheapest Tegra 4 tablet is $500 (such as Sony’s, HP, Toshiba) and and having a cable to use a controller on is awkward at best on a slim device.

            • BabelHuber
            • 7 years ago

            You can use a Sixaxis controller via bluetooth, too, if you do not like the cable.

            True, you pay $200 more for the current high-end tablets. But OTOH you get a much more flexible device, a bigger screen etc. Also most likely prices will drop.

            The only downside is that you cannot controller-game while walking on a tablet 🙂

            • MadManOriginal
            • 7 years ago

            As long as the tablet has a USB port.

            • Deanjo
            • 7 years ago

            Which is usually also used for charging.

            • MadManOriginal
            • 7 years ago

            Except for Apple tablets. And Nooks, some Samsung tablets, umm…probably others too that I don’t know of the top of my head.

            • Deanjo
            • 7 years ago

            Well the Apple still does charge via the USB connection to their 30 pin or lightning port. Still the same issue though where only being able to plug one in at a time. Suppose that is why nearly all tablets come with bluetooth.

          • renz496
          • 7 years ago

          you forgot about software. device like nexus 7 can also do streaming with app like splashtop but while they produce almost the same thing the way both were done (using splashtop and shield stream own function) is different. the shield comes with stock android but it also comes with software from nvidia to optimized the use of shield controller on that device. for example how you can use the left analog stick as a virtual mouse and use the d pad button to navigate the interface. just because you have the hardware it doesn’t mean you can use any feature associate with it just like that. inside nvidia shield there must be some kind of sotfware that made by nvidia so your pc can detect the device and use the streaming function.

          now company like toshiba offering tablets using tegra 4. so will they need that extra software from nvidia to make the streaming function like the shield or they just take the SoC and develop their own software for their tablet? most likely they just build what is relevant to their product.

        • Spunjji
        • 7 years ago

        If nVidia weren’t dead set on chucking this at us then they could easily enable that feature on any other Tegra 4 device. Then all you need is controller + tablet mount and bam, same thing.

      • MathMan
      • 7 years ago

      What’s your missing is that people are willing to pay for just a minor improvement in usability for a single use case.

      If one were following your guidance, tablets would have no space: they do less than a laptop and they don’t do anything more than a phone. I have all 3 on my nightstand, but I find myself grabbing the tablet most of the time. The iPhone is for when I’m walking around, the laptop is for when I need to type a lot.

      I watch Netflix and Amazon Prime and a simple HDMI cable allows me to connect laptop/tablets/phone to my TV. But I have 3 Rokus around the house for the minor convenience of not having to lug those around.

      This is no different. You can game fine on a tablet. You can game even better on a contraption that clicks the tablet or phone to a controller. But, if well made, you can never game as well as with a custom designed gaming machine.

      You don’t see the market or a use for such a device and that is fine. I have no idea how big the market is either. But there is no doubt in my mind that there will be quite a bit of young guys/gals who are going to be willing to spend the relatively low sum of $300 for what reviewers are saying is a very well made gadget. If GTX Titans and GTX780 are selling like hotcakes, this should sell much better.

      I’m not the target audience, but I see myself giving this to my nephews.

      • destroy.all.monsters
      • 7 years ago

      I’ve been eyeing this for awhile since the first reviews came out. I see it as a portable media player with a screen I can actually see and to assist me in djing by carrying music files. I may never game with it but it’s rugged and apparently well designed.

        • Deanjo
        • 7 years ago

        Ya, some will have their niche uses as well. My appeal for it is that it would make for a great AR Drone control for example.

      • StainlessSteelMan
      • 7 years ago

      You have been downvoted by all TR registered readers that bought a shield. The other 3 Shield owners in North America have not visited this website.

    • USAFTW
    • 7 years ago

    They’re NVidia though, if they say it’s been great then you know it’s been great.

      • HisDivineOrder
      • 7 years ago

      PR Spin The Way It’s Meant to be Played.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This