Single-board computers are popular. What can cheap ARM computers do?

cheap ARM computers

In recent years, single-board computers similar to the Raspberry Pi can be said to be very popular. The biggest feature of this type of product is its small size and simple product structure. It is developed based on the ARM architecture, which means that it does not natively support what everyone is familiar with. X86 architecture applications. Not long ago, Hardkernel launched its new generation single-board computer ODROID XU4. The price of only $75 makes this little guy quite cost-effective, but can this kind of cheap ARM-based mini-computer replace traditional PCs?

From the point of view of parameters, the overall performance of ODROID XU4 is the same as that of current mid-range smartphones. It is equipped with a Samsung Exynos 5422 octa-core processor clocked at 2GHz and 2GB RAM. The motherboard has an Ethernet interface and 2 USBs. 3.0 interface, 1 USB 2.0 interface, 1 HDMI video interface, and 1 GPIO interface, and even a CPU cooling fan can be installed, and the memory chip needs to be purchased separately. Due to the ARM architecture, ODROID XU4 can run operating systems designed based on the ARM architecture, including Debian, Ubuntu, and Android.

Due to the special attributes of the ARM architecture, the palm-sized ODROID XU4 does not run standard x86 applications, such as Office, Acrobat, and Spotify, like mini PCs and barebones. Therefore, it is difficult for many ordinary users to adapt. Fortunately, there are also many software versions of Linux that can run on ARM-based devices.

If the software you want to use only exists on the PC platform of the x86 architecture, then there is also an emulator like Exagear Desktop to choose from, but the emulator means lower operating efficiency, and the effect of running Office is not bad, but if you run 3D For large-scale applications such as games or Photoshop, cheap ARM-based computers are still a little weak. After all, it is indeed difficult for the Galaxy S5 to run LOL smoothly.

Since the hardware performance and software environment are not as good as x86 architecture traditional PCs, who are these ARM architecture single-board computers suitable for? The first is those developers with special purposes, such as various IoT smart devices. Of course, if you have strong hands-on ability, you can also convert it into a TV box or even a cloud server.

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