Those days are gone when Raspberry Pi rule the word as Smallest and cheapest computer ($25) in the world.
People were crazy about Raspberry Pi but it’s history now, A new future computer is seen expanding its roots. It is faster, Smaller and cheaper than Raspberry PI. It’s cost is about only $9. It’s called C.H.I.P . 🙂
This is created by a crowd funded company named as Next Thing Co.
The project was listed on KickStarter, and everyone gone crazy. The news spread like fire and within 6 hours of posting, Next Thing Co. was able to surpass their initial goal of raising $50,000. At the time of writing, 39,560 backers have successfully raised $2,071,927 for this $9 computer.
The device will be powered by 1GHz R8 ARM Processor,
512 Mega Bites of DD3 RAM,
WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity.
It has 3 USB ports, which can be used to connect to any screen, keyboard and mouse to convert into a full fledged computer system, with Internet enabled via WiFi. As of now, the creators have installed Debian Linux as the OS, which can be altered/updated in the coming days. As we seen with Raspberry Pi, It will not be difficult to hack it to install any OS or to do anything with it. Think running Android Or Windows on it. Using it as Cloud server or broadcasting your own FM radio. 😀
Secret of Low Cost
As per reports, C.H.I.P has contracted with AllWinner, a China based semiconductor company which was World’s largest tablet manufacturer in 2013. The System-On-C.H.I.P which is used here is actually based on the A13 processor manufactured by AllWinner, which powers most of the sub-$50 tablets sold worldwide.
Shenzhen-based startup accelerator HAXLR8R helped Next Thing Co. connect with AllWinner, and the rest is now history.
Thomas Deckert, Dave Rauchwerk, and Gustavo Huber from Next Thing Co. had earlier successfully crowd funded OTTO, which is a camera which can shoot and record animated GIFs; again a first for this world. They had successfully raised $71,559 from 414 backers for OTTO.
What Can C.H.I.P Do?
C.H.I.P can do everything which a full fledged computer can:
- Using open source LibreOffice, users can edit spreadsheets, create word documents and presentations
- Chromium browser can be used to surf the Internet
- C.H.I.P comes pre-loaded with Scratch, which is an easy to learn language that teaches the basics of programming via stories and charts.
- Via Bluetooth Controller, C.H.I.P can be used to play games as well
- Users can also play music by connecting it with a MIDI keyboard
- With DDR3 RAM, C.H.I.P can actually used to run any type of software or tool
- and it has lot of apps, that extends it functionality further
As per their timeline which they have demonstrated on the Kickstarter page, they will complete the manufacturing of C.H.I.P by February next year, and by May, it will be ready to roll out in the market.
$9 computer, with so much power and mobility certainly sounds like an awesome plan. All backers of this project and tech enthusiasts are now eagerly waiting for this cheapest $9 computer to hit the market, and give Raspberry Pi some serious competition.