Intel's Raspberry Pi Competitor, Atom-Based Minnow Board Now Shipping

Intel’s Open Source Technology Center, in conjunction with CircuitCo, is developing a low-cost, embedded-type motherboard based on the Intel Atom processor called the MinnowBoard. The whole affair is very charming (complete with a cartoon minnow logo), and it’s being marketed as a sort of fun, hobbyist-friendly board. (Sound like the Raspberry Pi?)

Although it uses Intel architecture, the hardware is open, and it runs the open source Angstrom Linux distro. Specs include an Intel Atom E640 (dual-core, 1GHz) with an Intel integrated Intel Graphics Media Accelerator GMA 600, 1GB DDR2 RAM, and UEFI firmware with 4MB SPI flash.

There’s plenty of I/O, too, including DVI via HDMI, micro SD, 2 USB hosts, PCIe, a micro USB-B port, a micro USB-B debug port, SATA 3Gbps, and a LAN port. The group has added experimental features that includes 8 buffered GPIO pins, 2 GPIO-controlled LEDs, and four GPIO switches.

The MinnowBoard site has a community page where you can get involved, and you can buy a board for yourself from several manufacturers linked to from the site. It’s worth noting that the MInnowBoard is quite a bit pricier than the Raspberry Pi—it looks like the board will run you $199 USD.