In February, a UK based foundation called Raspberry Pi Foundation took the developers’ community by storm by launching the Raspberry Pi, which is a credit card sized single-board computer. The device was launched with intention of motivating the education of basic computer science in schools and of course for home project works.
The Raspberry Pi makes use of Broadcom BCM2835 SoC which is home to an ARM1176JZF-S 700 MHz processor, VideoCore IV GPU and 256 megabytes of RAM. There’s no hard disk or solid state drive, however, it does have a card slot and makes use of a SD card for booting and internal storage instead. What makes it even more amazing is its $35 price tag.
Raspberry Pi doesn’t exactly pack a lot of horsepower, so the usage of this system is limited. Few months later, a Korean hardware company named Hardkernel launched a high end board similar to Raspberry Pi, but with extra computing power. The board has a Samsung Exynos 4 processor which is a quad-core CPU clocked at 1.4GHz. Apart from the powerful quad core processor, the board also offers 1 gigabyte of RAM, a Mali 400 GPU, six USB ports, ethernet, audio in/out, Micro HDMI and an SDHC reader. At $129, it’s a fairly expensive deal, but good for those projects which require more computing power than what the cheaper Raspberry Pi has to offer.
Several months later, Samsung Electronics themselves have launched Arndale, a new community development board. The board is built using the latest Exynos 5 Dual system-on-chip (SoC) and is perfect for people who are looking for a multi-threaded, NFC, GPS-based board. The board is house to an ARM Cortex-A15 dual-core CPU and ARM Mali T604 GPU. It should be noted that this board makes use of world’s first quad-core ARM Mali-T604 GPU based on 32nm High-K Metal Gate (HKMG) process technology.
Back in the month of May, we had seen the launch Origen development board. The board was based on Samsung’s Exynos 4210 dual core chipset and had several useful ports including HDMI, USB 2.0 host, SD slot, etc. The Origen came with a price tag of $199. The Arndale which Samsung has launched today can be considered as a sequel of Origen and delivers higher performance when compared to the last model. In addition to the added performance,
the board also offers OpenCL capability, NFC, GPS and camera sensor features.
“Imagination is the only barrier to the next era of mobile applications,” stated TH Kim, vice president of System LSI marketing, Device Solutions, Samsung Electronics. “The latest community development board powered by the Exynos 5 Dual gives developers access to a complete dual-core Cortex-A15 processor and Mali-T604 GPU platform with features not usually found on other community platforms, including NFC, GPS and a camera sensor. This inexpensive solution paves the way for an entirely new generation of middleware software and applications to be developed in an open source environment.”
The board is priced at $250, which is pretty expensive, but the target users will find this price tag to be a reasonable one.