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News Link • Technology: Computer Hardware

For $74, a Mini-Android Computer

• http://www.technologyreview.com,David Zax

Ars Technica and others report on a cool miniature Android computer that can plug directly into your TV. The whole thing is housed in a 3.5-inch plastic case, weighs in at 200 grams, and measures roughly the size of a USB thumb drive (a tiny bit bigger, actually.) It’s being sold by Chinese retailers, and you can get yourself one online for the low price of $74 (or 5% off, if you order 5 or more).

Some specs for you (get ready for some alphabet soup): an HDMI port that plugs into your TV (1080p), 512MB of RAM, a 4GB Flash drive (plus a micoSD slot that can bump you up to 32GB). For connectivity, there’s WiFi 802.11b/g. It runs Android 4.0 (ICS), and for a keyboard, you can use Android virtual keyboard or 2.4G wireless keyboard plus a fly mouse. The device has a AllWinner A10 single-core 1.5GHz ARM CPU, as well as a Mali 400 GPU. Need more specs? I doubt it, but if so, this site has tabulated them all.

A cheap, mini computer--does this sound a bit familiar? I’ve reported in the past on Raspberry Pi, the $35 mini-computer. After a lot of windup, the Raspberry Pi has finally made it out into the field, with its creator saying that 200,000 units should be out there by the end of June. Engadget just caught up with Eben Upton at Maker Faire Bay Area 2012, and shot a video of the encounter. 

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