Shield Tablet owners will soon welcome some new members into the Brotherhood of Shield Device Recalls. Certain 500GB Shield Pro Android TV micro-consoles aren't surviving the upgrade to firmware version 1.4, so Nvidia is recalling affected units of the premium model.
According to the company's FAQ, affected devices could fail to update on the first attempt, but complete the process on a subsequent attempt. Other Shields will fail to upgrade entirely and may fail to boot beyond the "fastboot" recovery screen. Nvidia also mentions a separate symptom in which the preview icons on the home screen become corrupted, and says the underlying cause remains the same.
The company says that affected units are suffering from an unspecified hardware issue related to the hard drive. While the firmware update isn't the cause of that issue, the update did expose the problem for more users. Nvidia warns that the issue will worsen over time, so even if your unit is able to complete an upgrade with some coaxing, or upgrades successfully but shows corrupted previews, it should be replaced.
Considering Nvidia's recent comparison of the Shield console to the revamped Apple TV, the timing of this news isn't great. Fortunately, the FAQ says "less than 1 percent" of Shield Pros are affected. The company is being proactive—affected customers merely need to contact Nvidia's Customer Care team for a replacement. As with the Shield Tablet recall, the company will send out replacement Shield Pros without asking owners to return their affected devices first.