The NVIDIA Shield TV is one of the very best streaming devices you can plug into a TV. Whether it’s serving as a Plex server, playing games, or streaming your favorite services, it does it all. But right now, it runs older Android TV software, and it won’t get Android TV 10. But that’s fine. Really!
As first spotted by 9to5Google, the news comes from an NVIDIA support forum, where a staff member explained the situation. Though the NVIDIA Shield TV remains on Android TV 9, two generations out of date, there’s no intention of upgrading it to Android TV 10. The reasoning makes sense too:
SHIELD development is still full steam ahead, we just had a release not too long ago. Android 10 was a no-op for android TV so we decided to skip it as the effort was large and there was essential [sic] no impact to end users other than the version string changing. Behond [sic] that, we don’t talk about our Roadmap ahead of time anymore, but i [sic] can tell you there is still a lot of development going into SHIELD.
The NVIDIA rep is correct, though: from a user perspective, Android TV doesn’t offer any real benefit or changes. Everything in the update is behind the scenes. It’s unlikely if NVIDIA did spend the effort, users would even appreciate the difference.
Android TV 12, on the other hand, is a sizeable update with real benefits to users. According to NVIDIA, “there is still a lot of development going into SHIELD,” so hopefully, that translates to an eventual update to a newer version of Android TV, even if that means skipping a version (or two).
And in the meantime, the NVIDIA Shield TV devices work well as is, so no reason to unplug them and look for a replacement. At least not yet.