The Asus Tinker Board gives North American makers a new computer option

asus releases tinker board single computer in north america asustinker02
North American makers and hobbyists take note: There is another single-board computer option in town. Your options for building your own computing device just increased by one, and this time it’s being offered by a major consumer electronics company.

Specifically, Asus has been offering its Tinker Board in the U.K. and throughout Europe since early 2017 to compete directly with other options such as the Raspberry Pi. Now, it is available in North America from leading retailers and its shipping at a competitive price, according to Tom’s Hardware.

The Asus Tinker Board is based on a quad-core Rockchip RK3288 system-on-chip (SoC) operating at up to 1.8GHz and utilizing Mali-T764 GPU, which is the same SoC that’s used in some Chromebooks. The single-board computer offers 2GB of LPDDR3 RAM and includes a gigabit Ethernet port, an HDMI port, four USB 2.0 connections, Bluetooth 4.0, and 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi.

Asus offers its own TinkerOS, based on the latest Debian 9 release, to power the Tinker Board. An LXDE desktop environment and Chromium web browser round out the core software load, with a TinkerOS media player co-developed with Rockchip to enable hardware-accelerated 4K video playback.

To support the kinds of connectivity options expected by makers and hobbyists, the Tinker Board includes a standard 40-point GPIO interface. Also standard are the PCB dimensions and topology, which means that the board will work with common chassis and accessories. Finally, two HD MIPI connections allow for connectivity to HD displays and cameras.

The Asus Tinker Board is available now from retailers like Amazon for $60. That is a bit more expensive than the latest Raspberry Pi and other similar single-board computers, but it is also more powerful, thus giving makers throughout the new world a competitive option for building their computing projects.

Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: Grow veggies indoors and shower more efficiently

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!

Accidental Amazon listings provides peek at cost of GTX 1660 Ti PCs

An accidental listing on Amazon provided a peek at the final cost of some of the new Windows 10 desktops with the GeForce GTX 1660 Ti on board, with prices possibly in the $1,200 range.
Emerging Tech

Words are so 2018. The Peeqo robot speaks exclusively in GIFs and video clips

Move over, Amazon Echo! Peeqo is a cute robot that will answer your spoken word questions by displaying a specially selected short video or GIF. Because, you know, it’s the year 2019.

From Air to Pro, here are the best MacBook deals for February 2019

If you’re in the market for a new Apple laptop, let us make your work a little easier: We hunted down the best up-to-date MacBook deals available online right now from various retailers.

What’s the difference between Lightroom CC and Lightroom Classic?

Lightroom CC has evolved into a capable photo editor, but is it enough to supplant Lightroom Classic? We took each program for a test drive to compare the two versions and see which is faster, more powerful, and better organized.

Reluctant to give your email address away? Here's how to make a disposable one

Want to sign up for a service without the risk of flooding your inbox with copious amounts of spam and unwanted email? You might want to consider using disposable email addresses via one of these handy services.

Need speed? Qualcomm unveils the Snapdragon X55, the world’s fastest 5G modem

Qualcomm is preparing for an even faster future: The silicon giant just unveiled a second generation 5G modem for smartphones, promising blistering download speeds as high as 7Gbps.

Chrome is a fantastic browser, but is is still the best among new competitors?

Choosing a web browser for surfing the web can be tough with all the great options available. Here we pit the latest versions of Chrome, Opera, Firefox, Edge, and Vivaldi against one another to find the best browsers for most users.

Don't use streaming apps? Try the best free media players for your local music

Rather than using music-streaming apps, you may want something for playing your local music. Good news! There are some good alternatives. These are the best media players you can download for free on Windows.

Barbie’s Corvette ain’t got nothing on Sphero’s fully programmable robot car

Sphero is known for devices like the Sphero Bolt and BB-8 Star Wars toy, but now the company is back with another addition to its lineup -- the Sphero RVR. The RVR is a fully programmable robot car that can be expanding with different…

Luminar’s libraries gain speed, drop need for you to manually import images

Luminar 3 just got a performance boost. Skylum Luminar 3.0.2 has improved speed over December's update, which added the long-promised libraries feature giving editors a Lightroom alternative.

Keep your portable computer safe and shiny with the best laptop bags for 2019

Choosing the right laptop bag is no easy feat -- after all, no one likes to second-guess themselves. Here are some of the best laptop bags on the market, from backpacks to sleeves, so you can get it right the first time around.

Like to be brand loyal? These tech titans make some of our favorite laptops

If you want to buy your next laptop based around a specific brand, it helps to know which the best brands of laptops are. This list will give you a good grounding in the most reliable, quality laptop manufacturers today.

Protecting your PDF with a password isn't difficult. Just follow these steps

If you need to learn how to password protect a PDF, you have come to the right place. This guide will walk you through the process of protecting your documents step-by-step, whether you're running a MacOS or Windows machine.