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Future shipments of $35 Raspberry Pi computer face delay

Anyone who missed the chance to buy one of the first 10,000 Raspberry Pi Linux computers may face a longer than expected wait after a manufacturing mix-up.

Future shipments of the $35 Raspberry Pi Linux computer may be delayed because of manufacturing problems.

Raspberry Pi is a credit card-sized device and one of the lowest cost computers available. The board has been designed as a tool for teaching kids coding, but it is also powerful enough to stream 1080p video, browse the web or write documents.

Some 10,000 devices have already been sold and are expected to ship to customers as intended in March and April.

However, the manufacture and shipping of future batches of the boards could be delayed after a factory mix-up left insufficient Ethernet jacks for future production.

Eben Upton, director of the Raspberry Pi Foundation, said the length of delay in manufacturing new boards depends on how long it takes to source new jacks.

"It's entirely dependent on whether or not we're going to be able to source jacks in large enough batches. It's possible there aren't enough lying around in warehouses, so we'll have to negotiate with someone, order them and wait for them to be made.

"It's not economically possible for the factory to make boards first, take them off the line, store them, then put them back on the line to add the new jacks later on. So we have to wait for availability before starting builds."

Distributor Premier Farnell estimates that future orders for the board will be fulfilled in July.

The version of the board initially on sale ships with a Linux Fedora OS and sports a 700MHz ARM processor in a Broadcom BCM 2835 chipset and 256MB of memory. The board comes with two USB ports, 10/100 Ethernet, a HDMI slot, a composite video socket for connection to a TV and an SD memory card slot. A $25 model with a single USB port and without Ethernet will be available later in 2012.

About

Nick Heath is chief reporter for TechRepublic UK. He writes about the technology that IT-decision makers need to know about, and the latest happenings in the European tech scene.

3 comments
Ubercuda
Ubercuda

Ship them WITH the two USB connections and WITHOUT the LAN jack for $30. We geeks can figure out installing a LAN connection if desired.

Ajax4Hire
Ajax4Hire

Supply chain has become the bane of my existence. I am no longer an engineer but a manager of parts and pieces for my design. Instead, I harangue vendors, I scrub Bills-of-Material, I harass software, mechanical, hardware for delivery dates. I am no longer an engineer. :( I do look with excitement toward getting a hand-full of Raspberry PI. Maybe orders will open up next week on March 14, PI day, maybe.

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