Raspberry Pi 4: 3x the performance of the Raspberry Pi 3B+ with Gigabit Ethernet, dual 4K HDMI and USB Type-C for just US$35
We suspect that the Raspberry Pi Foundation will make many people's day with today's announcement of its next single-board computer (SBC), the Raspberry Pi 4 Model B. Yes, you read that correctly, the Raspberry Pi 4 is here, a year earlier than expected. Previously, CEO Eben Upton had stated that the Pi Foundation would probably bring its next board to market in 2020, but the early arrival of its quad-core CPU took approximately "9-12 months of the schedule".
The Raspberry Pi 4 Model B promises to be a big step up in performance, with the Pi Foundation promising that its Broadcom BCM2711 64-Bit SOC will deliver up to 3x the performance of the Raspberry Pi 3B+. The BCM2711 integrates 4 ARM Cortex-A72 cores (ARM v8) that each clock up to 1.5 GHz. It can decode H.265 videos encoded in 4K at 60 FPS or H.264 videos encoded in 1080p at 60 FPS. The BCM2711 can also encode H.264 videos in 1080p at 30 FPS and supports OpenGL ES 3.0 graphics.
If that has not whet your appetite, then the developer board comes with up to 4 GB of LPDDR4 RAM, 2.4 GHz/5.0 GHz IEEE 802.11 ac Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 5.0 and Gigabit Ethernet. There are also 4 USB Type-A ports, two of which being USB 2.0 with the other two operating at the faster USB 3.0 standard.
The Pi Foundation has made some IO changes too. The full-sized HDMI port of previous Raspberry Pi boards has been replaced with two micro HDMI ports, with the Raspberry Pi 4 Model B supporting simultaneous dual 4K video. All the above is powered by a USB Type-C connector, which brings 500 mA of additional current over the micro USB port connector in previous Raspberry Pi boards. Accordingly, the Pi Foundation has developed a 15.3 W (5.1V/3A) Type-C power supply should you not have one that meets those requirements.
Finally, the Raspberry Pi 4 Model B retains the 40-pin GPIO header of its predecessors, with the Pi Foundation promising full backwards compatibility with accessories like the Power over Ethernet (PoE) HAT. The new board has a microSD card reader on its rear too.
The Raspberry Pi 4 Model B will remain in production "until at least January 2026" according to its product brief, with its release coinciding with an updated OS that the Pi Foundation calls Raspbian Buster. The OS is based on the upcoming release of Debian 10 Buster and will feature a Chromium 74 browser among other improvements and refinements.
You can buy the Raspberry Pi 4 Model B directly from the Pi Foundation today or from third-party retailers like Cana Kit, The Pi Hut, PIMORONI, PiShop.us and Seeedstudio. The board starts at US$35 for the 1 GB model, US$45 for the 2 GB model and US$55 for the 4 GB model. Please keep in mind that third-party stock levels are likely to be limited initially.