More to Life than Pi
While the Raspberry Pi has helped raise awareness of the possibilities for small, inexpensive computers, it's hardly alone in the marketplace. Here are six more compact systems that offer power well beyond their size.
While the open-source BeagleBoard project helps Texas Instruments show off its system-on-a-chip technology, it also provides a highly flexible development platform. However, at $150 a pop, it's a lot more expensive than the $25 or $35 Raspberry Pi.
Although it's also well above Raspberry Pi's price range at $100, Intel's Next Unit of Computing packs on some beefy hardware, in addition to the ability to run Windows. It's also not yet available, though it is slated for release in the latter half of 2012.
Taiwanese Via Technologies announced it will begin selling its Android-based APC system in July. The price is still above the Raspberry Pi, at $49, but the extra cash buys you more USB slots, RAM and other goodies. (This also makes it substantially bigger than its more famous cousin, of course.)
Looking a little like an off-brand cable box, the Mele A1000 is another ARM-based Android single-board device, though it can apparently also dual-boot into Ubuntu. Like many offerings in Raspberry Pi's market sector, it's both a little more powerful and slightly more expensive at $70.
A shade pricier than the Mele A1000, at $74, the MK802 is another Android-based mini system. The form factor looks amazing, though Ubergizmo cautions that it might require an external power supply. Like the Raspberry Pi, the MK802 is currently out of stock.
FXI Cotton Candy
Norway's FXI has somehow managed to cram hardware competitive with any device on this list into a package the size of an old keychain USB stick. While the Cotton Candy is pretty amazing, it'll also set you back $200 -- as soon as the company starts accepting pre-orders again.