The NVIDIA SHIELD is the quintessential Android TV box. It’s been the face of Google’s smart TV platform for years now, and it’s about to get a whole lot better. NVIDIA announced some new integration with Google Home, and it makes the SHIELD so much better.
What Can You Do Today?
The NVIDIA SHIELD has already let users do some things with Google Assistant commands. You can do the same things that you can do with any Android TV: ask Google to show a specific video on YouTube, bring up playlists in Google Play Music, or bring up a photo album in Google Photos.
What’s Coming Next?
Those commands were great—and they’ll still work—but now Google Assistant will almost be able to replace your SHIELD remote entirely. You’ll be able to use your voice to turn the SHIELD on and off, open any app, change or mute volume, play a specific show from some services.
You’ll need a Google Home or another Google Assistant device with a microphone, and the update should be rolling out to you soon. NVIDIA has the full list of commands on its site, so you know just what to say to your machine.
Why is This Cool?
Voice commands are cool, but the SHIELD already has a nice remote and controller for getting around the interface. Well, you may have times when the remote or controller is all the way over there (points to a far away corner of the living room). You don’t want to interrupt your epic Netflix binge to walk across the room. So just use your voice.
On a more serious note, you may know some who’s a bit hard of seeing, or who is losing sensation in their fingers. Yeah, they can see what’s on the TV, but they struggle a bit finding the exact button they need to press. Since they could open their favorite app with their voice, that’s not a problem. And that’s super cool.
This update will be rolling out to SHIELD users this month, but if you want to give it a go now you need only restart your SHIELD. After that, you’ll get the update within a day. Neat.