Raspberry Pi has entered the microcontroller board game with its latest product the Raspberry Pi Pico.
The new product is built on the RP2040 chip developed by the foundation and costs R69.90.
The board is pretty versatile, being able to run as a standalone board or as a companion to a Raspberry Pi computer you already have.
Moving into creating their own microcontrollers is a smart move as Raspberry Pi noted that many who use their computers often pair them with other microcontrollers to support with handling analogue input and low-latency I/O.
The Silicon Chip
Another feature of the microcontroller is the first silicon chip by the foundation.
With this new chip, the company aimed for high performance, to enable the device to talk to any external device and to keep the cost low.
The chip is only a 7 × 7 mm QFN-56 package containing just two square millimetres of 40 nm silicon.
The full specs are:
- Dual-core Arm Cortex-M0+ @ 133MHz
- 264KB (remember kilobytes?) of on-chip RAM
- Support for up to 16MB of off-chip Flash memory via dedicated QSPI bus
- DMA controller
- Interpolator and integer divider peripherals
- 30 GPIO pins, 4 of which can be used as analogue inputs
- 2 × UARTs, 2 × SPI controllers, and 2 × I2C controllers
- 16 × PWM channels
- 1 × USB 1.1 controller and PHY, with host and device support
- 8 × Raspberry Pi Programmable I/O (PIO) state machines
- USB mass-storage boot mode with UF2 support, for drag-and-drop programming
Where to buy
There is only one authorised Raspberry Pi seller in South Africa, PiShop.co.za
They are offering the Pico for R69.90 (excluding shipping) with stock already available. Find the product here.