The Raspberry Pi microcomputer prides itself on being affordable, with its tiny $35 price-tag for the original Model B Pi. But now its lowest cost board — the $25 Model A — has gone on sale in the U.S. The Raspberry Pi Foundation confirmed to TechCrunch that Model A can now be purchased in the U.S. via reseller Allied Electronics (which currently appears to have 70 units in stock).
What does $25 buy you? Enough processing power to use it to run a home media centre if you so desire, according to the Foundation. But the Model A was conceived with lower power consumption projects in mind, perhaps battery or solar powered, as Model A consumes around a third less power than Model B. It also has half the RAM of the second revision Model B, plus only one USB port and no Ethernet connection — to keep costs down.
Model A sales kicked off in Europe in early February, with Asia coming on stream last week. Eben Upton, Raspberry Pi founder, said today that sales of the Model A Pi have been amounting to “a few thousand a week” thus far.
“We burned through the first 20,000 units quite quickly, and are building a few thousand a week at the moment, but we don’t have good visibility of sell through yet,” he told TechCrunch when asked about early sales data, adding: “I’d expect us to dip in and out of availability for the next month or so until we reach a steady state.”
The Foundation passed one million Model B sales in January, less than a year after it launched the Pi in March 2012. The microcomputer was conceived as a tool to get kids learning to code – but has also proved popular with the maker community to power all manner of DIY gizmos and gadgets.