This story first appeared in Computer Weekly in February 2015, you can find the original here.

Performance boost plus Windows 10 support for new Pi PC

Raspberry Pi creator Eben Upton reveals the Raspberry Pi 2

Raspberry Pi creator Eben Upton reveals the Raspberry Pi 2 (Image: David McClelland)

The new Raspberry Pi 2 was announced today promising enough of a performance boost to make it ‘the second PC in the house’.

The credit-card sized computer debuted in 2012 and has since been embraced by schools, maker communities, industrial automation engineers and even the UK Space programme.

At today’s launch event its creator Eben Upton revealed a ripened Raspberry Pi with a quad-core ARMv7 processor and 1 GB RAM, claiming 6 times the speed of the previous B+ model.

This improved performance opens the door to a range of additional applications in schools and industry, as well as in the home.

Its in-home credentials may have been further boosted by the announcement that the Pi 2 will support both Ubuntu Linux and, thanks to a 6-month collaboration with Microsoft, Windows 10.

Raspberry Pi 2 claims x6 performance boost (image: David McClelland)

Raspberry Pi 2 claims x6 performance boost (image: David McClelland)

However, exactly what you’ll be able to do with a Windows-powered Pi isn’t entirely clear, even whether it will include a desktop user interface.

Speaking to Computer Weekly, Upton confirmed that the version of Windows 10 that Microsoft is to make available for free would be an IoT edition “more like what Microsoft did for Galileo [an Intel-based Arduino-compatible developer board].

“Microsoft has yet to make a statement about its exact capabilities, we don’t want to create an unjustified impression as to what capabilities it’s going to have.”

Despite the power-up the Raspberry Pi 2 maintains full compatibility with previous versions, sporting the same credit-card form factor and, importantly, the wallet-friendly price.

Since its release total sales of the maker machine have topped 4.5 million, and Upton anticipates a further three million units will ship this year alone. Not a bad return when initial sales projections for the Raspberry Pi were in the ‘tens of thousands’ range.

The Raspberry Pi 2 goes on sale today priced £24.94 + VAT.

First published 2nd February 2015 in Computer Weekly. Articles, features and reviews are reproduced on this site by prior arrangement as samples of my work and remain the property of their respective publishers and copyright owners.