A $35 PC? Can you even conceive of such a thing? Well, good thing Eben Upton did. Model B of his credit-card-sized Raspberry Pi computer, which is sure to be the envy of computer science classmates far and wide, is finally shipping to pre-order customers. (Yay!)

Make no mistake, this tiny morsel of USB-connected hardware is a full-fledged computer. From the FAQ page:

What SoC are you using?

The SoC is a Broadcom BCM2835. This contains an ARM1176JZFS, with floating point, running at 700Mhz, and a Videocore 4 GPU. The GPU is capable of BluRay quality playback, using H.264 at 40MBits/s. It has a fast 3D core accessed using the supplied OpenGL ES2.0 and OpenVG libraries.

How powerful is it?

The GPU provides Open GL ES 2.0, hardware-accelerated OpenVG, and 1080p30 H.264 high-profile decode.

The GPU is capable of 1Gpixel/s, 1.5Gtexel/s or 24 GFLOPs of general purpose compute and features a bunch of texture filtering and DMA infrastructure.

That is, graphics capabilities are roughly equivalent to Xbox 1 level of performance. Overall real world performance is something like a 300MHz Pentium 2, only with much, much swankier graphics.

It’s obviously not top-of-the-line, but if you’re a tech tinkerer, you’ll be happy to know this can strut its stuff alongside any other comparable machine. And it can even connect to TVs for some Airplay goodness. Mostly though, the Raspberry Pi PC will come in extremely handy for educational purposes.

So popular were these munchkins that the pre-orders got jammed up, putting the servers offline. If you were among the lucky ones who managed to get yours in there, you will be receiving your goodies in short order. If not, you can snag one now. Model B is available for £31.86 (UK, includes VAT and P&P) or $35 (US). Model A is not yet available. (The difference is that the A has no ethernet port and only one USB. Model B does have ethernet, plus one extra USB port, for a total of two. Both have 256 MB RAM)

For more info, you can check out Raspberry Pi online here.

 

Raspberry Pi deliveries start from RS Components and Allied Electronics

First boards leave RS warehouses for shipment to customers across the globe

OXFORD, England–(BUSINESS WIRE)–RS Components (RS) and Allied Electronics (Allied), the trading brands of Electrocomponents plc (LSE:ECM), the world’s leading high service distributor of electronics and maintenance products, are commencing shipments of Raspberry Pi, the credit-card sized computer board designed to seed a new generation of programmers. The shipments are being sent to the first group of customers from around the world, all of whom registered for a Raspberry Pi from RS and Allied.

“There has been a huge wave of anticipation and extraordinary levels of demand for Raspberry Pi since it was launched, so we are delighted to be delivering the first boards to initial customers”

When ordering Raspberry Pi from the dedicated online store, customers can click through to the associated parts and accessories required for activation of the board. These include USB A-B cables, HDMI cables, power supplies and SD memory cards from a range of leading suppliers, all available to purchase from stock. By ordering these cables and other accessories from RS and Allied at the same time as the Raspberry Pi board, customers can make a saving on the delivery cost, as the same total shipping charge is applicable.

“There has been a huge wave of anticipation and extraordinary levels of demand for Raspberry Pi since it was launched, so we are delighted to be delivering the first boards to initial customers,” said Glenn Jarrett, Head of Electronics Marketing at RS Components. “We are working very closely with the manufacturer to bring subsequent batches of boards into stock so that we can fulfil every customer order for Raspberry Pi as quickly as possible.”

Eben Upton, Raspberry Pi founder and trustee, commented, “This is an exciting and momentous phase for Raspberry Pi as the boards start heading out to customers from our distributors. We know from the incredible amount of interest in Raspberry Pi that there is a huge impetus among enthusiasts and educators for a product that brings computer programming to the masses, and we encourage these new programmers to share their experiences and results with us.”

RS and Allied are currently developing a variety of tools and initiatives to support Raspberry Pi users and the companies’ DesignSpark electronics design community is seeing many people discussing ideas and thoughts on Raspberry Pi. Recent additions to the site include a series of Pi Perspectives, where leading UK academics and scientists share their views on Raspberry Pi, and information on a Raspberry Pi experimenter’s kit now being developed. Various tutorials covering everything from initial set-up to a guide to the different Linux flavours, including a Fedora Mix start-up guide, are also available.

For developers, there is the free schematic capture and PCB layout tool from RS and Allied, DesignSpark PCB. It has already won awards from across the globe, and the company is seeing more developers adopt it with some already creating prototyping boards to use with Raspberry Pi.

The Raspberry Pi boards from RS and Allied are priced at £21.60 plus a shipping charge of £4.95 to any destination worldwide, plus VAT and import duty as applicable.

The Raspberry Pi board was created by the Raspberry Pi Foundation, a charity based in Cambridge, UK, and was conceived to encourage and enable children to learn and apply computer programming.