Libre has released a three flavor board called Tritium. The first board is a 32bit Allwinner H2+ based with 512MB onboard memory and costs only $9. The next one is in the range of $19, and is based around the 32-bit Allwinner H3, has 1GB onboard and is capable of 4K30 output via the HDMI socket. The most expensive model is the $29 2GB board, based around the 64-bit Allwinner H5 chip. All three of the boards have a proprietary Mali-400/450 GPU onboard. The boards are available on kickstarter and have 58 days to go.
It can be used to tinker with electronics, teach programming, build media centers, create digital signage solutions, play retro games, establish bi-directional video, and unlock imaginations. It is available in 512MB 32-bit 1080P, 1GB 32-bit 4K30, and 2GB 64-bit 4K30 configurations while utilizing a large existing collaborative ecosystem of parts for creators to build new and exciting products and services.
Each year, Linuxgizmos does a survey about Single Board Computers (SBC) to find out how many of hackers and makers are using each of which . The results this year show apparently, the domination of Raspberry Pi 3 over the other 97 boards by a proportion of 4-to-1. Raspberry Pi 3 was launched in the first quarter of 2016 and brought some enhancements to RPi2 especially in the CPU side which was 300 MHz faster than the RPi2 one, and an updated ARM architecture: Cortex-A53.
The scores for each SBC was calculated using a Borda scores format: (3 x first choices) + (2 x 2nd choices) + (1 x 3rd choices).
Raspberry Pi didn’t win the first place only, but also the second and the third places went to Raspberry Pi models — the new Raspberry Pi Zero W and Raspberry Pi 2 Model B a Cortex-A53 version of the Raspberry Pi 2.
Dozens of RPi-like clones where on the 98 list of SBCs. Only one has a good result; The Odroid-C2 was in the top 10.
Chinese cheap SBCs like Orange Pi and NanoPi Neo, the 8$ SBC, which are among the leaders in price and performance on paper had poor results — Orange Pi Zero was in the 28th place and the 31st was for NanoPi Neo.
Even that the most used CPU architecture in the hobbyists’ SBCs is ARM architecture (83 of the 98 boards in Linuxgizmos catalog are ARM based), the list also has eight x86-based boards and seven MIPS-based boards. However, Udoo x86 came in the sixth place, and Aaeon’s Intel Atom based UP Squared came in the 13th.
Last year, the highest ranked from x86-based boards was Intel’s MinnowBoard Turbot Dual.
Talking about the most important features that makers look for in the SBC; Open source software and community support were the most important factors. The other important features are purely about technical specs, except for the price in 5th place and the open source hardware info in the 4th place.
Last but not least, the results of this survey seem to be North America- and Europe-centered as shown in the following diagram. The centric results have some logical explanation. The folks behind linuxgizmos said that SurveyMonkey is blocked in China,the biggest Asian country. Only eight respondents came from China.
A64-OLinuXino OSHW board is released by Olimex Ltd. It’s an open source hardware board that runs Linux and Android. Entirely designed with open source software CAD tools and source files are available on github. Schematic is here.
A64 Cortex-A53 64-bit SoC from Allwinner
AXP803 PMU with Lipo charger and step-up
1 or 2GB or DDR3L @672 Mhz
0 / 4 or 16GB of industrial grade eMMC
SPI Flash in SO8 package with hardware WP (not assembled)
USB-OTG and USB-HOST
HSIC connector (not assembled)
HDMI and MIPI display connectors
Debug console serial connector
Audio In and Out
LCD display connector
GPIO 40 pin connector (not assembled)
UEXT connector (not assembled)
5V power jack
Dimensions: 90×62.5 mm
For the moment they have three models:
1G0G with 1GB RAM, no Flash, no WiFi/BLE
1G4GW with 1GB RAM, 4GB eMMC and WiFi/BLE
2G16G-IND with 2GB RAM, 16GB eMMC with industrial grade components -40+85C
The optional connectors and SPI Flash etc may be assembled upon request for small fee. The price of the board is 50 EUR.
A64-OLinuXino board with 64-bit Cortex-A53 processor – [Link]
Intrinsyc released it’s Open-Q™ 212 SBC, a full-featured, low-cost IoT computer based on a powerful quad-core ARM Cortex A7 (32-bit) 1.267GHz processor, with integrated GPU and DSP. This single board computer has some nice features such as Wifi, Bluetooth, LCD 720p support, HDMI 720p H.264/H.265 playback, an 8MP camera, four microphone inputs and amplified stereo outputs. It also features 4x USB ports, ethernet, serial interface, RTC clock and Li-Ion battery support. The board is ideal for creating voice controlled devices with noise cancellation technology and other internet enabled projects. The board can be used as a development kit or be embedded on final product. On the software side it supports Android 7 and there is a call for Linux support. This board packs some great features and looks promising in the IoT world. [via]
“We expect our Clients to use the board first as a development kit and then subsequently as an embedded SBC in their final product. It’s also likely that some Clients would want to de-feature or de-populate the SBC to lower the cost or to fit in a particular enclosure. Our team has the experience in hardware, software and mechanical engineering, we can quickly take the SBC’s core technology as is, and adjust the peripheral set. It’s our Client’s choice on how to proceed.” Said Intrinsyc.
Open-Q™ 212 SBC Specifications:
• Quad-Core ARM Cortex A7 (32-bit) 1.267GHz, GPU, DSP Memory/Storage
• 1GB LPDDR3 RAM
• 8GB eMCP Flash
• MicroSD card socket Wireless
• Pre-scanned Wi-Fi 802.11n 2.4Ghz, with chip antenna and U.FL antenna connector
• Bluetooth 4.1 + BLE LCD/Display
• Up to 720p LCD or up to 720p HDMI Type A Camera
• Up to 8MP over 2-lane MIPI CSI Video
• 720p@30fps playback
• Up to 720p playback with H.264 (AVC) and H.265 (HEVC)
• Up to 720p H.264 (AVC) capture Audio
• 4x microphone inputs
• 2x amplified speaker outputs
• 2x stereo line outputs Power
• PMIC and Li-Ion battery support I/O
• 4x USB 2.0 Type A host mode, Ethernet, Serial, RTC, I2S, GPIO, sensor header OS Support
• Android 7 Nougat, Call for Linux Operating Environment
• Input 12V/3A or single-cell Li-Ion battery
• Operating Temperature 0° C to +70°C
• Nano-ITX 120mm x 120mm
Open-Q™ 212 Single Board Computer for your IoT Device – [Link]
Raspberry Pi has been the household name for many years now, and many other companies have tried to replace it with their offering, but no one sussed to replace Raspberry Pi by performance and low-cost. Though, that might change as ASUS are entering the arena with their 90MB0QY1-M0EAY0 Tinker Board, which have better components across the board.
According to Hexus.net, ASUS believes the capabilities of the Tinker Board will make possible projects that were too much to ask of even for the newest Raspberry Pi revision. Discussing the reasoning behind the creation of the ‘ASUS Pi’, the Taiwanese computer firm said:
“Raspberry Pi has been in the market for so long, we’re here to expand users’ choices with more options. And this board has 4K support, higher SoC performance, faster Ethernet transmission, and flexibility for the memory size.”
The ASUS Tinker Board (90MB0QY1-M0EAY0) features Rockchip RK3288 quad-core SOC running at 1.8GHz with 2GB of RAM, which gives almost two times faster that Raspberry Pi 3’s Broadcom chip. The Tinker Board also comes with H.264 4K decode abilities and SDIO 3.0. Below you can see the specification diffraction between ASUS Tinker Board and Raspberry Pi 3.
Shenzhen Xunlong Software CO., Limited is now offering a new addition to the community of single board computers. The latest edition of Orange Pi is the $20 Orange Pi PC 2.
Even though this 85mm×55mm board isn’t as cheap as the $4 VoCore2 Lite, its $20 price tag is justified by the hardware it packs inside. And, it also saves you $15 if you don’t want to go for the $35 Raspberry Pi 3. Orange Pi PC 2 is a single-board quad-core 64-bit computer capable of running Android 4.4, Ubuntu, Debian, Banana Pi, and Raspberry Pi images.
The board includes an Ethernet port and three USB ports. It has 1GB of memory, H5 High Performance Quad-core 64-bit Cortex-A53, and a standalone graphics chip. It supports camera input as well as HDMI out and even has a physical power switch and IR blaster. It takes power using a separate power connector despite the fact that it has a micro-USB port. The absence of WiFi and Bluetooth is a slight turn-down but USB 2.0 ports can be used to add these things.
Full hardware specifications
CPU: Allwinner H5 64-bit Quadcore (Cortex-A53). RAM: 1GB DDR3. GPU: Mali-450. Storage: 2MB NOR Flash, up to 64GB via MicroSD card. Connectivity: 2xUSB 2.0, 1xUSB 2.0 OTG, HDMI, 10/1000 RJ45, IR receiver, camera interface, 40-pin header. Audio: 3.5mm jack, inbuilt mic. Operating System: Ubuntu Debian, Raspbian, Android.
This board is an advanced edition of the recent Orange Pi PC with different CPU, GPU and Ethernet connection.
Getting Started with Orange Pi PC 2
You need to get these accessories to start using your Orange Pi:
TF card (minimum 8 GB), HDMI to HDMI lead or HDMI to DVI lead (for monitors with DVI input), AV video lead, DC power adapter, keyboard and mouse, plus Ethernet cable/USB WiFi and Audio lead as an option.
Prepare your TF card
Insert your TF card into your computer. The size of TF should be larger than the OS image size, generally 8GB or greater.
Format the TF card. (using this tool for Windows, and some commands for Linux)
Run fdisk –l /dev/sdx command to check the TF card node.
Run umount /dev/sdxx to unmount all the partitions of the TF card.
Run sudo fdisk /dev/sdx command to configure TF card. Use o command to delete all partition of TF card and use n command to add one new partition. Use w command to save change.
Run sudo mkfs.vfat /dev/sdx1 command to format the new created partition of TF card as FAT32.
(x should be replaced according to your TF card node)
Write the image file to the TF card using this software on Windows and this command on Linux: sudo dd bs=4M if=[path]/[imagename] of=/dev/sdx (x should be replaced according to your TF card node)
Set up your Orange Pi PC following the steps in the diagram
Note : Avoid using the micro-usb power connector, because micro-usb power does not supply power.
Shut down your board
You can use the GUI to shut down the Orange Pi PC2 safely or just run this command in the terminal: sudo halt or sudo shutdown –hnow This will shutdown the PI safely, (just use the power key to turn off might damage the TF-cards file system). After that you can press the power key for 5 seconds to turn it off. Full guide and any updates on the OS image will be available here.
This open source SBC (single board computer) is a great option to start building IoT devices, DIY projects and for development purposes. You can use it as a mini-computer, a wireless server, music and video player,etc. You should remember that the limit is the sky when it comes to open source boards.
The Orange Pi PC 2 is up for sale on AliExpress and you can get it now for $20. You can apply for free products from Orange Pi through this application by defining your purpose of using the product and following the steps mentioned here.
You can check the official website to find more details and updates about Orange Pi PC2 and other boards from Orange Pi. Codes and source files are available at Github.
Google had launched Brillo, a new Android based OS used for embedded development – in particular for low-power, IoT devices. Brillo brings the simplicity and speed of software development to hardware for IoT with an embedded OS, core services, developer kit, and developer console.
Brillo works in conjunction with Weave, an open, standardized communications protocol that supports various discovery, provisioning, and authentication functions. Weave enables device setup, phone-to-device-to-cloud communication, and user interaction from mobile devices and the web. The chief benefit is allowing a “standardized” way for consumers to set up devices.
The big challenge is unifying and facilitating the communication among the estimated 200 billion smart devices expected by 2020. Whether you’re looking to build a simple DIY project or implement an enterprise scale m2m (machine to machine) project, Google’s new tools will be a big help. Fortunately, Brillo appears pretty easy for developers who are already familiar with Android.
Check this video by Google about Brillo and its features, and you can watch another video about Weave
Brillo supports a trio of ARM, Intel, and MIPS hacker SBCs (Single Board Computers) called “ made for Brillo” hardware kits. One of these kits is The Edison kit for Brillo by Intel, that includes an Edison IoT module plugged into a baseboard that offers convenient, Arduino-style expansion compatibility.
One of the great things about Brillo that the security issue with IoT applications is solved by choosing to use secure boot and signed over-the-air updates and providing timely patches at the OS level.
If you are interested in developing Brillo itself you can check the Brillo developer portal where code, development tools, and documentation for the Android-based Brillo embedded OS for Internet of Things devices can obtained. You should ask for an invitation then when you gain access you will get everything needed for your next project.
A high introduction was presented by Intel in the Open IoT Summit in April 2016, you can check it here.
As Intel, UN and IDC mentioned in their joint report that there will be an average of 26 smart devices for every human in just 5 years, we can predict a rapid growing development and enhancements for IoT systems, devices and protocols.
Raspberry Pi Zero, the 5$ computer, had Broadcom BCM2835 1GHz ARM11 single-core processor, 40-pin GPIO header, mini-HDMI socket for 1080p60 video output and two MicroUSB one for power and one for data transmission with 40mm x 40mm dimension.
NanoPi price is 8$ plus 5$ for shipping, you can order some accessories like MicroSD card memory and USB power adapter from the product page.
SoildRun launched ClearFog Base, a SBC (Single Board Computer) designed for IoT and networking applications.
ClearFog Base includes SoM (System on Module) designed by SolidRun too and it is based on Marvell’s ARMADA A388 SoC (System On Chip) with Dual core ARM Cortex A9 @ up to 1.6 GHZ and supports Linux Kernel 3.x and OpenWrt OS.
The Board features up to 2GB storage and optional 8GB uSD/4GB eMMC with the following connectivity options, 1× mPCIE, 1×USB 3.0 port, 2 ×Port dedicated Ethernet and 1×SFP.
ClearFog Base has a mikroBUS™ connector to add accessories and supports MikroElektronika’s Click board modules. More than 150 Click boards are available, including I/O, wireless, sensors, transceivers, displays, encoders, pushbuttons, and advanced GPS modules.
The price of ClearFog base can reach 117$ with the optional power adapter, 8GB SD card and 4GB eMMC.