Raspberry Pi’s entire business is releasing tiny, low-cost computers, but at one point several years ago, the company decided it could go lower than the $30-$35 price tags we’ve seen for many of its flagships. In 2015, the company introduced the $5 Raspberry Pi Zero, which was soon followed by the $10 Zero W. Today, Raspberry Pi announced another addition to the Zero lineup, revealing the Raspberry Pi Zero 2 W, which runs $15.
Even though that’s a fair bit more expensive than the original Raspberry Pi Zero, it’s hard to complain when the total cost comes to $15. However, you may not even to spend $15 to obtain one of these Zero 2 W computers, as Raspberry Pi is handing them out to everyone who subscribes to The MagPi magazine. Current subscribers will be getting their free Zero 2 Ws in the next few days, while Raspberry Pi says that all new subscribers from here on out will receive one as a welcome gift (at least until we have a new Zero W).
In any case, what does $15 get you? Raspberry Pi shared the specifications for the Zero 2 W today, saying that it uses with a Broadcom BCM2710A1 quad-core 64-bit SoC with Arm Cortex-A53 cores clocked at 1GHz. Packed on top of that in a system-in-package configuration is 512MB of LPDDR2 SDRAM. On the board, we’ve got the following:
• 1 × USB 2.0 interface with OTG
• HAT-compatible 40 pin I/O header footprint
• MicroSD card slot
• Mini HDMI port
• Composite video and reset pin solder points
• CSI-2 camera connector
As far as wireless connectivity is concerned, the Raspberry Pi Zero 2 W supports 2.4GHz IEEE 802.11b/g/n wireless LAN, Bluetooth 4.2, and Bluetooth Low Energy. The computer also supports H.264, MPEG-4 decode and H.264 encode both at 1080p30, along with OpenGL ES 1.1, 2.0 graphics. The overall footprint of the Zero 2 W matches the original Zero, so Raspberry Pi says that “almost all” Zero cases and accessories should work with the new computer as well.
The Raspberry Pi Zero 2 W is launching today in the UK, EU, US, Canada, and Hong Kong. Other countries will follow as Raspberry Pi obtains the proper certifications, but prospective buyers should keep in mind that we’re currently in the middle of a global semiconductor shortage. With that putting the squeeze on pretty much everyone who makes hardware, Raspberry Pi attempted to set the proper expectation for availability today, saying that it plans to ship around 200k units in the remainder of 2021 and another 250k in the first half of 2022.