Nvidia is gearing up to launch two brand new Shield TV products, and in preparation, the company has now revamped its remote control phone app. If you have a Shield TV, you'll find a lot more here than what the standard Android TV Remote Control app provides.
Although the Shield app has only jumped from 2.0.2 to 2.1, the changes are drastic and worthy of a major version bump. When you choose a box to control, you'll first see a launcher divided into two tabs for apps and games. Tap any of them, and it'll conveniently launch without having to navigate to it on the TV.
To get the navigation controls, you need to expand the bottom toolbar. That's where you'll find the trackpad, d-pad, and new swipepad. In the latter you simply swipe in any direction to trigger one movement. Compared to the d-pad, it's easier to use without looking at your screen, and compared to the trackpad, it doesn't ask you to move around a mouse like it's 2005.
Left and Middle: Apps and games launcher. Right: New swipepad remote.
All three remotes have the same six buttons on the bottom: back, home, and menu (which doesn't do anything for me anywhere), then rewind, play/pause, forward below them. The previous app version lacked the menu and forward/rewind buttons. You can still call up the keyboard on all three remotes, but the tab button to quickly move between text entry fields is gone.
Left: Trackpad. Middle: Dpad and keyboard open. The tab button is gone. Right: New volume panel.
More importantly, there are now three additional functions: a microphone that lets you trigger Google Assistant on your Shield by talking from your phone, a volume button to raise/lower/mute, and a power button to quickly put the Shield to sleep.
Old interface in version 2.0.2.
A few other changes have been detailed in the changelog posted on the Play Store.
- Newly designed application UI
- Adds a feature to launch applications on Shield from Shield TV remote
- Adds a feature of swipepad
- Adds two finger swipe feature to trackpad
- Adds volume control feature to iOS app
- Adds volume control side drawer UI
- Adds a feature of power button
- Adds a feature of voice control through Google Assistance
- Adds a new UI for keyboard, also provides support for multi-language, edit, copy and paste functionalities
- Connectivity and stability bug fixes
Version 2.1.0 of the Nvidia Shield TV app is available on the Play Store, but you can also grab it from APK Mirror.