$25 Raspberry Pi outperforms iPhone 4S


I’ve been reading about the Raspberry Pi on various websites over the last few days and thought it was worth sharing with you, our amazing readers.

Raspberry Pi is basically a $25 Linux Computer that has been developed by the Raspberry Pi foundation, (a bunch of people from Cambridge University) with the noble aim of providing low cost hardware to facilitate an improvement in programming skills.

Which may not be very exciting in itself, however despite the low price tag it looks like they’ve developed a very capable piece of kit. According to Eben Upton, one of Raspberry Pi’s founders, the device’s graphics performance is more than double that of the iPhone 4S’s GPU. There have been various demos around the web of the Raspberry Pi running XBMC to playback 1080P video at 30 frames per second.

I’m extremely excited about the potential of such high performance, low cost hardware. Imagine it being built into future phones, media players, budget set top boxes or even TVs.

You can see a demo of the Raspberry Pi in action below.

[yframe url='http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4NR57ELY28s']

 

  • The_Prof

    I find this whole project so exciting – I check the site twice a day waiting for the first boards to be released! 

    There’s a good reason we don’t have phones with similar performance, however.  Two major things – size and power consumption.  Whilst the Rasberry Pi is indeed more powerful than handheld devices in the market today, you can’t really compare the two.  The power requirements are vastly different between this and the iPhone 4S by a factor of almost 12 (based on the specification I’ve read).  The heat-dissipation requirements are also vastly different.  These all have some bearing on how much juice you can pump through the chips, clock-speed, and even the type of RAM used, all resulting in different performance profiles. 

    The performance the likes of Apple get from their chips is really quite a feat of design.  The cost of the Rasberry Pi is its party-piece (and the team have done a really truly amazing job IMHO).    

    This unit hasn’t been designed for ultimate efficiency (although it’s vastly more efficient than most desktop PCs) – it’s been designed to be cheap, and it achieves that admirably.  I’m buying one to use as a server at home, and two more for robotics projects. 

    I think you’re playing down their potential for learning about programming – this is becoming a lost-art here in the UK, and I’m hoping that these devices could make it exciting again, just like it was back in the days of the ZX Spectrum and the C64!

  • Matt Peddlesden

    Awesome stuff.  Fantastic discovery, thanks for reporting it!