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Banana Pi quad-GbE router SBC features M.2 and five mini-PCIe slots with SIM

Nov 18, 2020 — by Eric Brown — 6590 views

SinoVoip’s $750 “Banana Pi GrassRouter” is a quad-GbE router board for mobile communications that runs Linux on a dual-core -A53 MediaTek MT7622E and offers 5x mini-PCIe for 4G, M.2 for 5G, and 7x SIM slots.

In Aug. 2019, SinoVoip launched a $68 Banana Pi BPI-R64 router board with 4x GbE ports, a WAN port, and dual mini-PCIe slots. As part of the company’s “BPI 4.0 server” OEM/ODM customization service, the company developed a customized multi-link fusion version of the board for a customer with more mini-PCIe and SIM card slots. This Banana Pi GrassRouter SBC is now publicly available for $750.



Banana Pi GrassRouter
(click images to enlarge)

Designed as a cellular gateway board for mobile communications such as VPX applications, the Banana Pi GrassRouter board is touted for its 4G multiplex aggregation and stable aggregation link. The board’s “4G Multiple Merges” technology offers stable simultaneous multi-link upstream/downstream activity with network speed guarantees, says SinoVoip.

The Banana Pi GrassRouter shares many features with the smaller BPI-R64, including running OpenWrt or Debian on a 1.35GHz, dual-core Cortex-A53 MediaTek MT7622 and offering 4x GbE ports and a WAN port. It once again ships with 1GB DDR3, 8GB eMMC, and a microSD slot, and you can now bump the RAM up to 2GB.



Banana Pi GrassRouter front and back detail views
(click images to enlarge)

New features include three more mini-PCIe slots for 5x total, each with its own dedicated SIM card slot designed for 3G or 4G LTE modules. There is also a new M.2 B-key slot with dual SIM slots designed for 5G. SinoVoip recommends Simcom and Quectel 5G modules.


Banana Pi
BPI-R64

As noted by the CNXSoft story where we read about the GrassRouter, the device switches from MediaTek’s MT7622A to an almost identical MT7622E SoC, which lacks the built-in WiFi/Bluetooth support found on the BPI-R64. You can still add an 802.11ac/BT module via one of the mini-PCIe slots, supported by on-board WiFi/BT antennas.

The Banana Pi GrassRouter loses the previous 40-pin router in favor of a 26-pin header. There is no mention of the BPI-R64’s SATA interface or optional PoE module. The 12V/3A board ships with power and reset buttons, a battery, a software key button, and a serial debug interface.

 
Further information

The Banana Pi GrassRouter is available for $750 at AliExpress plus shipping ($10.13 to the US). More information may be found in the wiki. Note: We found that in most browsers, we get a “Your connection is not private” warning when we click on the wiki link.
 

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PLEASE COMMENT BELOW

2 responses to “Banana Pi quad-GbE router SBC features M.2 and five mini-PCIe slots with SIM”

  1. Squeeky says:

    That’s bloody expensive….. Won’t be replacing my home router any time soon even though I am looking for a device like this. I’m not quite sure what market they are aiming at. For this money I could buy a small server with virtualization and some pcie cards to do the same job.

  2. pepa65 says:

    I thought the price had to be a slip of the finger, as this is a jump into a whole different segment of the market. So you can stick 7 SIM-cards into this as failover?? Very curious who is going to want this — not me.

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