NVIDIA has just announced that pre-orders for its SHIELD Tablet LTE have started. This comes within the timeframe originally hinted by NVIDIA, and the other important point is that the $399 LTE version has 32GB of local storage (vs. 16GB for the $299 WiFi only version).
As I understand it, the LTE support comes in the form of two models: one for the USA and another for the rest of the world. It’s possible to speculate that there may be more models to support additional LTE bands combinations in the future. From a user standpoint, it makes little difference in the experience, unless you plan to order one from abroad.
NVIDIA says that SHIELD Tablet LTE is compatible with 70+ carriers in the world, including AT&T, one of the most difficult carrier to be certified on (along with DoCoMo in Japan). AT&T’s certification isn’t the only thing going on with that carrier. NVIDIA has made a deal with the carrier to have some customers eligible for a $100 credit.
NVIDIA’s SHIELD Tablet tends to dominate gaming-related benchmarks and offer an impressive performance/price ratio, which places it firmly in the lead if you are looking for a “gaming tablet”. It also has the ability to stream PC games, and to record and broadcast live games to the net, an exclusive feature made possible by its Tegra K1 main processor, so SoC.
A new batch of games will also accompany the SHIELD Tablet LTE: Beach Buggy Racing (cart racing), Bombsquad (multiplayer vs.), and Broadsword (strategy). All three feature very different game play and graphics.
To find the SHIELD Tablet, the sure location is http://shield.nvidia.com, but Amazon, BestBuy, Newegg are other well-known partners.