At this point in the SHIELD’s lifespan, NVIDIA could give master classes in product support. The Android-based streaming gadget has had only a minor hardware revision but has seen dozens of notable software and feature updates. The latest one started rolling out yesterday.
SHIELD’s Software Experience version 7.2 adds one major app, Amazon Music. That’s likely only to matter for users who are already invested into the Amazon Prime media system, and considering that the SHIELD also has access to Prime Video, that should be more than a few of them. Amazon Prime offers a base selection of streaming music and radio tools, while the “Unlimited” upgrade adds 50 million tracks for $7.99 a month, or ten bucks a month if you’re not a Prime member.
Other goodies in the update include the latest round of Android security updates, 5.1 audio support for the Android TV YouTube app, and user-customizable Quick Settings on the home screen (a handy feature if you’re tired of diving into the grid-based settings menu). The SHIELD also has access to Microsoft’s SMBv3 protocol when accessing files on a remote computer or network-attached storage. This software update will also spread the integrated Google Assistant support to users in Canada, Germany, and Spain.
The SHIELD TV received significant discounts over Black Friday, but the sales seem to be making a curtain call. Most major US retailers will be selling the standard package, the “Gaming Edition” (with controller) and the “Smart Home Edition” (with SmartThings Link) for $30 off the retail price starting on December 24th. Canadian customers can take $40 CAD off, too.
The software update should be available to all users now.