Wandboard ( www.wandboard.org) is a community-sponsored embedded development board offering a rich set of multimedia features, now available at www.futureelectronics.com. Based on Freescale Semiconductor’s i.MX 6 series multimedia processor, it is available in single-core (Wandboard Solo) and dual-core (Wandboard Dual) versions. The Wandboard Solo is priced at $73.95 and the Wandboard Dual at $93.95. Wandboard is the product of a not-for-profit initiative that, like the Raspberry Pi, is aimed at providing a low-cost embedded development platform for students and hobbyists, as well as professional users.
Wandboard has adopted a system-on-module architecture, using the open EDM standard to connect the module to a simple carrier interface board that provides common system functions such as power and communications interfaces.
This means that developers who need different hardware resources from those available in an off-the-shelf Wandboard module can easily and cheaply modify it, and create a new carrier board to fit their specific application. In doing so, they can draw on the wide choice of open-source community software already available, and so reduce the risk normally associated with customisation and development engineering.
The Wandboard provides a high-performance hardware platform, capable of running complex applications and demanding functions such as rendering high-definition graphics. The Freescale i.MX 6 series processor, which features ARM Cortex-A9 technology, supports Ubuntu and Android, and the Wandboard itself supports mainline u-boot and Linux.
The board offers up to 1GB of DRAM, an SPDIF interface and analog audio outputs, an HDMI graphics connector, camera interface, two SD card slots, USB capability, Gigabit Ethernet and (on the Wandboard Dual only) on-board 802.11n WiFi and Bluetooth. The boards also offer a wide range of expansion pin headers.
Colin Weaving, Technology Director of Future Electronics, said: “The Wandboard shares the same open and community-sponsored philosophy as Raspberry Pi, but offers a more powerful hardware platform for very little extra cost.” John Dixon, Mass Market Business Development Manager for Freescale’s microcontroller business, said: