The Raspberry Pi is one of those small yet brilliant ideas that changed the world. Thanks to its low footprint, its small size, and especially its affordable price, the RPi gave birth not just to a new market but also to a new maker culture. Times have changed, however, and so have the price of components, which is why the RPi Foundation is making a welcome but somewhat odd price cut in time for its eighth birthday.
The first Raspberry Pi launched in 2012 with barely 1 GB of memory. For the modest purposes it was meant to accomplish, that was more than enough. Even today, the 1 GB base model memory on current-gen RPis is sufficient for low-power and low-resource projects but that’s no reason not to offer something better if possible and feasible.
The Foundation notes that RAM prices have become considerably cheaper since then so that they’re able to now sell the 2GB variant of the Raspberry Pi 4 at $35, $5 less than its original listing. This makes the new board even more feasible for projects that need a bit more wiggle room but without blowing out your budget.
That, however, puts the 1GB RPi 4 in a rather odd position. Now both configurations sell for $35 which makes you wonder what purpose that lower RAM model will serve. The RPi Foundation itself expects that most customers will opt for the now-cheaper 2GB but it’s keeping the 1GB around for commercial customers who might need the exact same board they’ve already bought before. Sadly, no discounts there.
Today there are already a number of single-board computers or SBCs competing in that space, including ones powered by Intel x86 chips. The RPi, however, still remains the golden standard in price, reach, and extensibility and this price cut, though small, further cements its position.