The NVIDIA SHIELD TV is now available to buy in a new bundle which delivers more on the Android TV device’s smart home capabilities. The main difference is the inclusion of a Samsung’s SmartThings Link dongle. The NVIDIA SHIELD TV Smart Home Edition is available to buy now from Amazon, and is priced at $219.99 in the US.
The SmartThings Link usb dongle for the NVIDIA SHIELD became available in late 2017, and so in reality this is not a new product. But now the bundle is listed on the official NVIDIA site allowing future owners to buy the products together instead of getting them separately. Truth be told, there doesn’t seem to be any financial incentive buying the bundle, as it’s priced exactly as the cost of the items if purchased separately. So for now this more of a convenience bundle, than anything else.
What makes SmartThings Link different is its size, as it is just a USB dongle that can be plugged into the back of the SHIELD as a usual USB dongle. Once done and connected, the SmartThings Link immediately becomes a smart hub for the home, allowing SHIELD owners the option to control and manage multiple smart devices (lights, outlets and more) from the SmartThings Link, in other words from the SHIELD Android TV. You can see a full list of all the supported products here: https://www.smartthings.com/products.
So, for who is it for then? Well this bundle is specifically designed for those people who are looking for an immediate solution for both Android TV and a Smart Home Hub. Similar to the FireTV Cube by Amazon, with more power and fully compatible with Alexa. You can also buy each piece separately. In fact, as of right now the “SHIELD TV Gaming Edition” is selling curently for $179.99 (you actually get the gamepad for FREE!). Then you can always add on the $39.99 price for the SmartThings Link, the total comes in at $219.98 – the same cost as the Smart Home Edition which does not inclue with the NVIDIA Shield TV gamepad.