NVIDIA Bringing Plex Media Server to SHIELD Android TV with 3.2 Update in June

During Google I/O 2016, NVIDIA shared some great news about things coming to the SHIELD Android TV, and we covered a good part of it back then. We were also told of more things to come, which gave us something to look forward to. During that time, one of our editors picked up a SHIELD Pro of his own and while he thought that it was a great product, he lamented the content solutions outside of the US.

Well, ask and receive, because NVIDIA is bringing more than 4K VUDU that will be bundled into the 3.2 update. Plex and NVIDIA have partnered together to bring its Plex Server functionality – all of it – to the SHIELD Android TV. This means whether you have videos on a NAS or want to start from scratch with the SHIELD Pro, Plex will be able to serve up content to other devices including those with DLNA support. This requires a few adjustments with the SHIELD base package, such as enabling file share access to the SHIELD – meaning that you will be able to access it like Samba or other network based share location. The system will also work on both wired and wireless networks, though Plex suggests wired network for best performance.

Plex has this to say in their blog, announcing the partnership:

“The SHIELD is so powerful that it can not only run our Android TV interface better than just about anything out there, it can also run the full media server, including support for hardware-accelerated video transcoding (H.264, MPEG2 and HEVC)! With multiple simultaneous streams!”

shield32slideA few other enhancements that you can expect in the 3.2 update that NVIDIA shared with us, including reminders of what was covered at I/O:

  • HDMI-CEC will be expanded to allow turning the TV off in addition to the on already supported.
  • Dolby passthrough support will see Dolby Atmos included in the supported formats.
  • VUDU 4K will be added to the system automatically with the update.
  • Netflix will receive HDR support, instantly available on Netflix Originals like Marco Polo. Netflix will be adding hundreds of hours of more content soon.
  • Over 300 games available for SHIELD Android TV in the SHIELD HUB and GeForce NOW apps, such as the recent release of Resident Evil 5.
  • 4K/60fps support in YouTube.
  • Expanded universal search by including Netflix and VUDU.

HDR support for Gamestream, originally mentioned at I/O, will still be coming later this summer but is not in the 3.2 release. And if you haven’t checked out the updated apps available for Android TV in the Google Play store, now is a good time. This might also be the right time for owners to look at the expandable internal storage options from the earlier Marshmallow release, especially with all that media you may want to store on the SHIELD!

Want to see more about this? Plex has a video also ready to go and we’ve got it here for you!

Oh – and for those who wondered how that editor reacted when he caught this news during the time I was writing it up? If you didn’t see yesterday’s tweet, look at it now and it will all make sense.

So does this continue the SHIELD Android TV’s rule of the living room for you? Hungry for this release? NVIDIA says to look out for it later this month and for even more updates and enhancements later this year! In the meantime sound off in the comments below!