Raspberry Pi is a rather compact — credit-card sized — computer that packs quite a punch despite being just $25. In this small cheap package lies a computer that:
- Uses the Broadcom BCM2835 chipset
- Has an ARM11 processor of 700Mhz
- Has 128MB RAM
- Can run Linux and the plethora of software available for it
- Can connect to a TV via RCA or HDMI
- Can play back audio via 3.5mm audio jack or HDMI
- Can play videos in HD
- Supports USB2 devices
- Is powered by a mere 5V over micro USB
Other than that, being a computer a number of devices, such as a keyboard, mouse, webcam, mic etc can be added via USB. Another model featuring 256MB RAM and an ethernet port is available for just $10 more — for $35.
Note that you cannot run Windows on it, since it is an ARM-based computer, however Raspberry Pi will support a number of Linux distros, which can be run off the an SD card. It is unlikely Windows 8 for ARM will run on it either, considering the specifications of the device. Additionally, you cannot run Windows applications on it via Wine, since Wine is not an emulator but a compatibility layer, and Windows applications are compiled for x86 / x86_64.
Raspberry Pi is a great educational tool and a very cheap way to get into computers. Raspberry Pi will be available worldwide when it launches next month, however the shipping costs to India might just take away a bit from its low-price charm.