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by Staff Writers
San Francisco, California (AFP) July 23, 2013
Graphics chip star NVIDIA has set a July 31 release date for its Shield handheld gaming and entertainment device powered by Google's Android software.
The high-performance, handheld gadgets are in full production and will begin shipping at the end of this month, Shield director Jason Paul said in a blog post at the Silicon Valley company's website.
"Last month, we made the difficult decision to delay the launch of Shield due to a mechanical issue we found in our rigorous testing process," Paul said.
"Since then we have been working non-stop to put Shield through its paces and ensure it meets the highest quality control standards in the industry."
NVIDIA has priced Shield at $299 and is taking orders online at nvidia.com and newegg.com. NVIDIA unveiled the portable gaming device at the major Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas early this year.
Shield is powered by what NVIDIA boasted to be "the world's fastest mobile processor," the Tegra 4 chip, and device features include a multi-touch display and console-grade controls.
Shield's debut comes as Sony and Microsoft are poised to release new-generation videogame consoles designed to put them at the heart of home entertainment.
Nintendo released its Wii console successor, the Wii U, late last year.
Shield will enter a gaming landscape being transformed by the booming popularity of free play on smartphones or tablet computers.
People are increasingly squeezing play into sessions of five minutes or less sprinkled through the day, according to mobile game industry trackers.
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