A new variant of the Nvidia Shield has popped up on the Google Play Developer console. The new hardware goes by the hardware codename “mdarcy,” in contrast to the current model’s “darcy,” and it will run Android 9 Pie.
Left: Current “darcy” Developer Console listing. Right: New “mdarcy” listing. Click to zoom.
There are a few differences between the two hardware listings, but chief among them is support for the Android 9 SDK on the new version, which would indicate it will be launching with Android 9 Pie. The new “mdarcy” listing has the same Tegra X1 T210 SoC listed as the current Shield TV, but that doesn’t necessarily mean the hardware is unchanged. This could just be a placeholder.
Difference in features between darcy (red) and mdarcy (green), white is shared.
There’s a new hotword system feature associated with the mdarcy hardware as well. It’s a little speculative, since documentation for that feature is sparse, but this could indicate that smartspeaker-like hotword-detecting Assistant functionality may be baked in, above and beyond the current voice input on the Shield remote. Support for adoptable storage has also been dropped.
A few months back, XDA spotted two new remote hardware codenames from Nvidia: “stormcaster” is a new Shield controller, and “friday” is a new Shield remote. That hardware could also debut with this new Shield TV.
This new model appears to be a minor refresh, as the barely-changed “mdarcy” hardware codename would imply. It’s speculative, but this refresh could also accompany a general update for the product line to Android 9 Pie — Nvidia’s 2015 Shield TV is among the longest-lasting hardware to ever run Android, and the company has continued to update it even as the slimmer 2017 model replaced it. As we previously mentioned, some of the details in the Play Console listing could also be placeholders, and there may be other changes and newer features associated with this new hardware.
- Anonymous Alligator