NVIDIA’s next hardware device could be a 2-in-1 SHIELD Android hybrid

Codenamed ‘Mystique’, the hybrid device can work as a laptop in a desktop mode, when attached to a keyboard.

After cancelling plans to build any SHIELD products back in 2016, it seems like NVIDIA wants a bigger piece for itself in the portable gaming market.

NVIDIA’s SHIELD Experience software reportedly contains code indicating that the hardware giant may be building a hybrid tablet and laptop device.

NVIDIA’s next hardware device could be a 2-in-1 SHIELD Android hybrid

NVIDIA SHIELD K1 tablet.

The SHIELD K1 was NVIDIA’s Android gaming tablet powered by the NVIDIA Tegra X1 SoC. The same chip is used on the Nintendo Switch.

Discovered by XDA-Developers, a desktop-mode feature is under development according to the code found in the software. It’s being made for a product codenamed ‘mystique’. Based on the findings, hardware specifications may have also been published online by the company pointing towards a 2-in-1 hybrid device like the Microsoft Surface Book.

The source code published suggests a ‘Tegra X2’ was going to be used with the device. However, that was changed to 'Tegra Xavier' in later commits. Used for automotive and AI computing, the Tegra Xavier may seem to be too much of an overkill for a 2-in-1 device. However, it’s capable of running at low power and that’s what we could see happening here.

The discovered feature will allow users to switch between three display or UI modes including desktop, tablet and an unknown mode called ‘dynamic’. With a keyboard attached, the device directly starts in the desktop mode. The addition of this feature in the code isn’t new because it was spotted in production builds that date back to December 2018. It suggests that NVIDIA may have been working on it for quite some time now.

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