Today the Raspberry PI Foundation revealed their latest product, the Raspberry PI Compute Module.
It has the same base hardware of the Raspberry PI, being the Broadcom BCM2835 processor, 512Mbyte of RAM and also a 4GB eMMC Flash device. It’s really the bare-bones of a Raspberry PI, but with on-board flash memory.
It’s form factor is smaller than the original Raspberry PI and designed to fit a standard DDR2 SODIMM connector, which enables makers to integrate it easily into their own custom circuit boards. However they remind you not to attempt to install it into your laptop, since it’s not compatible with the DDR2 SODIMM standard.
It’s promised that thanks to the new design with 200 pins, it extends the full benefit of the Broadcom BCM2835 making many more GPIO available.
You get the full flexibility of the BCM2835 SoC (which means that many more GPIOs and interfaces are available as compared to the Raspberry Pi), and designing the module into a custom system should be relatively straightforward as we’ve put all the tricky bits onto the module itself.
To complement the Compute Module, they also announced an open source companion ‘IO Board’ to help makers get started. Since the foundation also included a schematic for both the Raspberry PI Compute Module and IO Board, makers will have a platform to build upon and with the benefit of the huge community that surrounds the Raspberry PI.
The size appears to be very similar to the Raspberry PI, perhaps a little larger, however it benefits from a huge array of pin headers. Like with the Raspberry PI version A, does not have the on-board ethernet. A nice touch however was to add support for 2x serial cameras and 2x serial displays.
The two boards will initially be sold together as a Kit but later sold individually. There is no news about the individual cost, however they say the batch cost is expected to be about $30 per 100.
They should start to become available from June 2014.
Source: Raspberry PI Foundation