If the Raspberry Pi is still too expensive for your inner cheapskate, there’s a new contender on the block, and its makers are hawking it as the first-ever $9 computer. It’s called CHIP, and it is a complete computer small enough to fit in the palm of one’s hand. It can be used just like a regular computer, with users being able to hook up a keyboard, mouse, display, and power supply. There’s on-board storage, and its makers show it being used to create and save documents and play games, among other things. There’s also a cool accessory that goes alongside it, allowing the computer to be used portably.
CHIP contains a 1GHz processor, 512MB of RAM, and 4GB of storage space. Connectivity is mostly wireless, with it including Bluetooth 4.0 and WiFi 802.11 b/g/n. It can also be used with cables, however, such as a composite-out cable. It comes loaded with a bunch of apps, as well, like VLC, GIMP, Libre Office, Audacity, and a bunch of other software many will be familiar with.
Joining CHIP is an accessory called “Pocket CHIP” in which the computer can be attached, giving it a 4.3-inch display, tiny QWERTY keyboard, battery able to operate it for 5 hours, and a somewhat retro case in which it is all contained. Those who get one can use the computer as part of projects, or as an ultra-cheap device for playing emulated games or performing basic computing activities.
Next Thing Co., the company behind the CHIP, was seeking $50,000 USD on Kickstarter, where it has thus far raised nearly $300,000 USD with 28 days remaining. Because the computer is already so cheap, you’ll not be able to get it with a typical crowdfunding discount — but hey, it’s only $9. Shipping is estimated to start this upcoming December.