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Open-spec touch panel computer runs on octa-core SoC

Apr 18, 2019 — by Eric Brown — 3765 views

FriendlyElec’s $90 “Octa-Core 64-bit AiO Android System” touch-panel features a sandwich-style mainboard with a Smart6818 compute module running a Samsung S5P6818 plus a 9-inch, 1280 x 800 touchscreen, optional 4G, and -20 to 70℃ support.

FriendlyElec (FriendlyArm) has launched an open source touch-panel computer called the Octa-Core 64-bit All-in-One Android System. LinuxGizmos reader John Joe, who tipped us about the touch panel’s appearance on the FriendlyElec website, calls it “new” and we’ve seen no other coverage. The system sells for $90 with 8GB eMMC or $110 with the optional mini-PCIe-based 4G radio.



Octa-Core 64-bit AiO Android System, front and back
(click images to enlarge)

The Octa-Core 64-bit AiO is based on FriendlyElec’s $45 Smart6818 compute module, which features an octa-core, Cortex-A53 Samsung S5P6818 dynamically clocked from 400MHz to 1.4GHz. The S5P6818 is found on two FriendlyElec SBCs: the NanoPC-T3 Plus and NanoPi Fire3-LTS — the current long-term support version of the NanoPi Fire3.


Smart6818 module (left) and detail view
(click images to enlarge)

The Smart6818 module normally ships with a different mainboard than the one on the AiO system as part of an optional $80 Smart6818 Dev Kit 2.0. Both products were covered as new entries by CNXSoft in June 2018.


Earlier Smart6818 Dev Kit 2.0 detail view (left) and with 7-inch touchscreen option
(click images to enlarge)

The Smart6818 Dev Kit uses the same Smart4418/6618SDK carrier board as found on the $75 Smart4418 Dev Kit 2.0, which also shipped last June. The latter kit is equipped with a $40 Smart4418 compute module, which is almost identical to the Smart6618 COM except that it offers a quad -A9 Samsung S5P4418.


Octa-Core 64-bit AiO mainboard (left) and deployed as an industrial touch-panel
(click images to enlarge)

The Octa-Core 64-bit AiO is billed as open source, and like the other kits mentioned above, it ships with schematics. There are no schematics yet for the Smart6818 module, although there is one for the Smart4418.

When we first saw the AiO system shipped with an ancient Android 5.1.1 build based on an equally venerable Linux 3.4.39 kernel, we wondered if this was old news. But judging by the fact that the NanoPC-T3 Plus and NanoPi Fire3-LTS still list the same configuration, that’s probably the best you can get on the S5P681. Unlike the AiO system, these other two S5P681 based boards also support FriendlyCore (Ubuntu Core) and other Linux distros. So does the Smart6818 COM when purchased on its own.

The 74 x 55mm Smart6818 module ships with 1GB DDR3 and 8GB to 32GB eMMC. A GbE controller, audio codec, and PMU are also onboard. The module expresses interfaces such as HDMI 1.4a, LVDS, RGB, USB, DVP camera, MIPI-CSI, audio, and more via 174 board-to-board pins.

On the Octa-Core 64-bit AiO Android System, the module is matched with a choice of two Smart6818 mainboards: one with WiFi (802.11ac) and dual-mode Bluetooth 4.1 and another that adds a mini-PCIe-based 4G radio and micro-SIM slot. External 4G and WiFi antennas are also available.



Octa-Core 64-bit AiO detail view
(click image to enlarge)

The 9-inch capacitive touchscreen has 1280 x 800 resolution. Major coastline connections include a microSD slot, GbE port, USB 2.0 host port, and a data-only micro-USB device port.

The Octa-Core 64-bit AiO is further equipped with audio in and out headers and a DVP camera connector. Additional onboard I/O includes 2x USB 2.0 host, 2x RS-232, 2x I2C, 2x SPI/GPIO, a debug UART, and boot headers. You also get a 3-axis accelerometer, a PWM buzzer, 3x user keys, and a pair of LEDs.

There’s no battery on the AiO except for the coincell battery that powers the real-time clock, so this cannot be used as a mobile Android tablet. There are separate barrel jack and terminal pin connectors for 12V DC input, as well as a power button and a 12V/2A adapter. The board is said to accept 9-15V power. The AiO measures 235.1 x 156.4mm, weighs 565 grams, and supports -20 to 70℃ temperatures.

 
Further information

The Octa-Core 64-bit All-in-One Android System is available for $90 with 8GB eMMC or $110 with the 4G radio plus shipping. More information may be found at FriendlyElec’s Octa-Core 64-bit AiO shopping page and wiki.
 

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PLEASE COMMENT BELOW

2 responses to “Open-spec touch panel computer runs on octa-core SoC”

  1. Arnd Bergmann says:

    These SoC are designed by Nexell and have no mainline Linux kernek support, unlike the similarly named Samsung Exynos chips that Samsung uses in their phones.
    Samsung’s discontinued Artik710 had the same chip.as far as I can tell, and there is A 4.1 based kernel for it, but I doubt that anyone is going to maintain that in the future now.
    I suspect the software side of this new product is at a dead end.

  2. Nick Summy says:

    I would be curious to see the person(s) dumb enough to buy this thing

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