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The Raspberry Pi Foundation may not be the only single-board computer maker on the market, but it's arguably the most popular. In March 2018, the Raspberry Pi 3 B+ debuted, essentially a board which at stock speeds yields the power of an overclocked Raspberry Pi 3. Now, the Raspberry Pi 3 Model A+ joins the lineup with most of the power of a Raspberry Pi 3 but a few minor changes.
Raspberry Pi Foundation Launches Raspberry Pi 3 Model A+
As the name suggests, the Raspberry Pi 3 Model A+ delivers similar specifications to the Raspberry Pi 3. You'll find a quad-core 1.4GHz Broadcom CPU like on the Raspberry Pi 3 B+, dual-band Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.2. There's no Ethernet port though, and RAM takes a 50% reduction from 1GB to 512MB. Similarly, there's one USB 2.0 port, down from four on the Raspberry Pi 3 and 3 B+.
In 2014, the Raspberry Pi Foundation released the Raspberry Pi the Raspberry Pi Model A+ which, likewise, cut down on RAM. But the original A+ lacked Wi-Fi or Ethernet, whereas the Raspberry Pi 3 Model A+ retains Wi-Fi for internet access while dropping Ethernet to cut costs.
Along with its pared-down connectivity, you'll find a lower price as well. The Raspberry Pi 3 A+ retails for $25 USD. It's not the least expensive Pi board. Those honors still go to the $5 USD Raspberry Pi Zero. However, it's down $10 USD from the flagship Raspberry Pi 3 B+.
At $35 USD, the B+ isn't terribly expensive. However, the Pi 3 Model A+ targets makers seeking more power than the Pi Zero without the I/O of the B+. Notably, this could be a solid starter board for entry-level makers, or appropriate in maker spaces, schools, and similar environments. Lack of Ethernet and the fifty percent RAM cut back remain the only limiting factors. This is still a solid board for Internet of Things (IoT) projects and maker spaces.
Your turn: Will you be adopting a Raspberry Pi 3 Model A+?
Moe Long is an editor, writer, and tech buff with a particular appreciation for Linux, Raspberry Pis, and retro gaming. When he's not hammering away at his keyboard, he enjoys running, reading, watching cinema, and listening to vinyl. You can read his writings on film and pop culture at CupOfMoe.com and check out his thoughts on movies on the Celluloid Fiends podcast.