A smaller version of Raspberry Pi 3 is coming soon

Raspberry Pi's new Compute Module will have similar circuitry to that of Raspberry Pi 3, and go on sale in a few months

A smaller version of the popular Raspberry Pi 3 will go on sale in a few months.

Raspberry Pi is developing a new version of its Compute Module, a single-board computer that plugs into specific on-board memory slots. The new Pi will be more like a mini-computer inside a computer, and it won't come with a power supply.

The Compute Module will have similar circuitry to that of Raspberry Pi 3, a wildly successful computer that can be a PC replacement. But it will be smaller, with the memory, CPU, and storage embedded tightly on a board.

The differences between the Compute Module and the Raspberry Pi 3 will be subtle. While the Compute Module will have a 64-bit ARM processor like the Pi 3, it won't have Wi-Fi, Eben Upton, founder of Raspberry Pi, said in an interview with IDG News Service.

The Compute Module could ship as soon as this quarter, Upton said. It will be priced similar to its predecessor, the 2-year-old Compute Module, available from reseller RS Components for about US$24. The older Compute Module is based on the original Raspberry Pi.

Like Raspberry Pi 3, the new Compute Module will work with Linux and Microsoft's Windows 10 IoT Core, Upton said.

A Compute Module Development Kit, in which the Compute Module can be slotted for testing, may also be sold. The Development Kit could have multiple connectivity and port options, much like the Raspberry Pi 3.

The Raspberry Pi 3 has sold millions of units and has evolved from a gadget development tool into a PC. The Compute Module could also appeal to businesses that want to put computers inside electronics or industrial equipment.

Small computers are being used to operate factory equipment, and the Compute Module could fit in that scenario.

Raspberry Pi is already successful among computing enthusiasts and tinkerers, but Upton wants to break into that industrial market. People are buying inexpensive Pi boards and increasingly putting them in equipment, either for testing or for real-world use, Upton said.

The Compute Module falls into a category of devices called single-board computers, or SBCs. Like its predecessor, it's likely the new Compute Module will be compatible with SODIMM slots, which are cheaper than PCI or SDRAM slots and can carry high-speed signals reliably.

Companies like Atmel and Freescale also sell SBCs with microcontrollers that are used to test applications and hardware. The 64-bit ARM CPU in the Compute Module will be faster than microcontrollers on the other boards.

Wi-Fi is a signature feature of Raspberry Pi 3, adding much-needed on-board connectivity features. The economics and small size of the Compute Module make it difficult to embed Wi-Fi circuitry.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags Raspberry Pi

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Agam Shah

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Cool Tech

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?