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Raspberry Pi fans celebrate 1.75M units sold

Oct 10, 2013  |  Eric Brown
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The Raspberry Pi Foundation announced it has sold 1.75 million of its Linux-ready, open platform Raspberry Pi single board computers (SBCs) to date, with one million of them manufactured in the U.K. In other Pi news, the foundation announced a deal in which the $25 Pi Model A and the $30 Pi Camera Board are available in a $40 bundle.

The Raspberry Pi may not be the most open source SBC in the world — its ARM11 Broadcom processor is largely opaque, among other issues — but it’s certainly the most popular. Since it launched its first Raspberry Pi board in February 2012, the non-profit Raspberry Pi Foundation has sold 1.75 million units, further establishing the Pi as the best-selling open platform SBC in history.



U.K. manufacturing team cheers its 1-millionth Raspberry Pi
(click image to enlarge)

 

In addition to announcing the 1.75 million unit milestone, the U.K.-based Raspberry Pi Foundation promoted the fact that one million of those units were manufactured on native soil. According to the foundation, which began moving the manufacture of the Pi from China to the South Wales-based Pencoed plant run by Sony in September 2012, manufacturing partners RS Components and Premier Farnell “have reshored all the production of Raspberry Pis to that factory, and for the last few months, all the Pis you buy have been made in the UK.” The Pencoed factory is said to have won several awards from the British Factory Awards competition, including Best Factory, Best Electronics Factory, and Best Factory for Innovation.

Despite the Pi’s widespread use by hobbyists and hackers around the world, the Raspberry Pi Foundation continues to focus first on the U.K. market. The Foundation has stuck to its original mission of pushing the Pi as a tool for computer education in the U.K.

The low $35 price of the popular Raspberry Pi Model B unit has been one of the keys to its success, and the $25 Model A offers an even cheaper option.



Raspberry Pi models A (left) and B (right)
(click images to enlarge)

 

The Pi is frequently paired with open, microcontroller-based Arduino boards in robots and other mechanical gizmos. Yet, when Arduino recently launched its first Arduino TRE SBC, its first board to combine Arduino circuitry with ARM/Linux functionality, it chose to collaborate with BeagleBoard.org, the community behind the BeagleBone Black. Arduino also collaborated with Intel on adding Arduino compatibility to the Linux- and Intel Quark-based Galileo SBC.



Arduino’s new TRE SBC and Intel’s Arduino-compatible Galileo
(click image to enlarge)

 

Pi Camera Bundle

Although the $35 Raspberry Pi Model B continues to be the best seller, the slightly stripped down, $25 Model A continues to be adopted for lower-power and mobile applications. Now, RS Components and Premier Farnell’s Element 14 store are sweetening the deal by offering a bundle (pictured on the right; click to enlarge) in which the $30 Pi Camera Board and the Model A are jointly available for a total of $40 — a savings of $15.

The 5-megapixel Camera Board attaches to the Pi via a CSI interface using a ribbon cable. The board offers a fixed focus lens featuring an Omnivision 5647 sensor. Static images can achieve up to 2592 x 1944 resolution, and the camera supports up to 1080p30 video. The 25 x 20 x 9mm module weighs just three grams, making it suitable for mobile applications, according to the Pi Foundation.
 

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