Blowing away its $50,000 crowdfunding goal earlier this year, the pocket-sized CHIP is on track to be the most inexpensive computer in the world, costing a fraction of the Raspberry Pi, and has raised over $2,000,000 from backers, reflecting incredible demand. Everything about this project is open source, so if you want to make your own, you can do that too.
Created by Next Thing Company, CHIP packs a 1GHz Allwinner R8 Cortex A8 processor with a built-in Mali400 GPU, 512MB of RAM and 4GB of flash storage as well as a USB port and headphone/microphone jack. Run on Linux, CHIP also comes with an array of games and educational programs to learn coding and other technology skills.
While the barebones base unit costs under $10, most users will opt to buy a case that includes a keyboard, 5-hour battery and offers some protection to the CHIP. Obviously, the device will still require a series of accessories, but with the core computer itself costing so little, one can perhaps afford to splurge on a nicer monitor, keyboard and/or mouse to go with it.
More from its makers: “C.H.I.P. is a computer. It’s tiny and easy to use. C.H.I.P. does computer things. Work in LibreOffice and save your documents to C.H.I.P.’s onboard storage. Surf the web and check your email over wifi. Play games with a bluetooth controller.”
“With dozens of applications and tools preinstalled, C.H.I.P. is ready to do computer things the moment you power it on. C.H.I.P. is a computer for students, teachers, grandparents, children, artists, makers, hackers, and inventors. Everyone really. C.H.I.P. is a great way to add a computer to your life and the perfect way to power your computer based projects.”