Raspberry Pi 4 launched this week, priced at its traditional $35 with 1 GB of RAM, with a new 2GB version for $45 and a 4GB version for $55.
Low price, hackability and relative simplicity have been the hallmarks of Raspberry Pi’s creators who introduced the first version of the single board computers in 2012. Broadcom continues to be a close partner and supplies the SoC (System on a Chip) for the boards.
The Raspberry Pi 4 Model B has a 1.5 GHz quad-core 64-bit Arm Cortex-A72 CPU, offering about three times the performance of the previous version.
It also supports Gigabit Ethernet, dual band 802.11 ac, Bluetooth 5.0, dual monitor support and VideoCore VI graphics.
A Pi 4 Desktop Kit runs $120 including the 4GB version, a case, a mouse and keyboard, a pair of HDMI cables, a 16 GB microSD card, and power supply unit.
While the new version offers what the creators call a PC-like level of performance, the Raspberry Pi 4 retains the capability of earlier versions to interface with external devices for control, robotics, sensor, and industrial applications. As of 2018, more than 19 million versions of Raspberry Pi had been sold.
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Raspberry Pi 4 is available online but also at a new Cambridge, England store.
Previous versions of Raspberry Pi were based on 40 nm silicon, but now Raspberry Pi 4 is built on 28 nm silicon. The power savings of the smaller process geometry allows the new Pi to use a Cortex-A72 Core processor, replacing the earlier Cortex-A53.
The newer core executes more instructions per clock, with performance increases of between two to four times over the Raspberry Pi 3B.
Raspberry Pi 4 has hit the market nearly a year ahead of schedule. Industrial customers will be able to continue to use existing versions of Raspberry Pi “for the time being,” according to a statement from Raspberry Pi Trading. “We’ll keep building these [earlier] models for as long as there’s demand.” Raspberry Pi 1B+, 2B, 3B and 3B+ will continue to sell for $25, $35, $35 and $35, respectively.
The new Rasbian OS is based on the upcoming Debian 10 Buster release, which Raspberry Pi calls a “radically overhauled OS.” It has a new user interface and update apps, including the Chromium 74 web browser. More details are expected later this week.