Skip to main content

Meet Geekbox, a tiny PC built for streaming that runs Android and Ubuntu

meet geekbox a tiny pc built for streaming that runs android and ubuntu header
Image used with permission by copyright holder
If you’re stuck deciding between a new PC to freshly install Linux on and an Android tablet, Chinese Internet retailer Geekbuying may have just the solution.

That’s because the firm is preparing to launch Geekbox, a tiny computer with some appreciable internals, including an octa-core processor, 2 gigs of RAM, Bluetooth 4.1, 802.11ac Wi-Fi capabilities, Gigabit Ethernet, and 4K video support. Unfortunately, the Geekbox is held back by an all-too-conservative 16GB flash storage capacity.

But what makes Geekbox interesting isn’t its guts, at least not in the hardware sense. Rather, it’s the versatility of this little machine, which is capable of running both Android and Ubuntu right out of the box, thanks to a set of preloaded software. And if for some reason Ubuntu doesn’t feed your desktop appetite, there’s compatibility with Rockchip’s Light Biz OS to consider as well. Unlike vanilla Android, Light Biz is configured specifically for desktops in order to transcend that feeling that you’re using a watered-down mobile OS.

Even outside the software, Geekbox offers a generously open hardware experience as well. You can open up its case, take out the components, most of which are soldered to the system-on-a-module, and use the insides for whatever you’d like. This includes, if Geekbuying has its way, connecting to a 7.9-inch 2,048 x 1,546 “Retina” display (don’t tell Apple). Or, if the aforementioned specs aren’t enough, LandingShip offers a printed circuit board that sports a number of additional input and output options, as well as a 2.5-inch SATA bay, LEDs, a 60-pin GPIO header, and connectors for cameras and displays, in addition to a number of other enhancements.

You can pre-order the Geekbox now for the modest price of $110. What’s more, if you leave a comment on the Geekbuying promotional page, you’ll earn a $20 coupon towards your purchase. That’s 90 bucks for a Rockchip RK3368-equipped computer that can effectively dual-boot Android and Ubuntu immediately out of the box.

With the PC, you’re getting a microSD card slot, a single HDMI 2.0 port, a micro USB port, two standard USB ports, and a Rockchip RK3368 Cortex A53 processor with a PowerVR SGX6110 graphics chip. It’s even packaged with an infrared remote, making it a practical streaming box solution.

By design, the mini PC abstains from using fans for cooling, as a means of limiting system noise when you’re trying to catch up with Casual on Hulu. However, if you’re looking to do some more intensive things with the device, Geekbuying thoughtfully included a fan connector that allows for the installation of an active cooling system.

Surely, this is one of the more flexible mini PCs on the market, though it’s certainly not for someone just looking to do some light web browsing and video streaming here and there. No, there are plenty of devices for that. Clearly, Geekbox is for those who need all of that and more — a compact, modular PC with tons of customization.

Gabe Carey
Former Digital Trends Contributor
A freelancer for Digital Trends, Gabe Carey has been covering the intersection of video games and technology since he was 16…
This new Google Chrome security warning is very important
The Google Chrome logo on a black phone which is resting on a red book

Google is changing how it warns its users about suspicious files on Chrome by adding new full-page warnings and cloud scanning regarding suspicious downloads, according to Windows Report. This is an attempt to explain more precisely why it blocks specific downloads. Google says that the AI models will divide the warning into two categories: "suspicious" or "dangerous."

The new warning system primarily benefits those using the anti-phishing Enhanced protection feature. The files users upload to the cloud for an automatic scan and those that undergo a deep scan are 50 times more likely to have the AI flag them as malware.

Read more
Keychron continues to move away from mechanical switches
special edition Keychron K2 HE keyboards.

The Keychron K2 HE (Hall Effect) keyboard is a new and improved version of the popular K2 model but with magnetic switches rather than mechanical ones.

The special edition versions have a great minimal look to them, with either black or white keys and stylish partly wooden frames. Keychron plans to launch the new keyboard on Kickstarter next month, and you can sign up on Prelaunch now to get a notification when it goes live.

Read more
This Alienware gaming laptop with RTX 4090 is $600 off
The Alienware M18x gaming laptop.

If you're looking for gaming laptop deals that don't hold back when it comes to performance, you may want to set your sights on the Alienware M18x. This configuration with the Nvidia GeForce RTX 4090 graphics card, which is originally priced at $3,800, is on sale for $3,200 from Dell for huge savings of $600. It's still not cheap, but if you want a machine that will let you explore the limits of modern PC gaming, this is the gaming laptop that you should purchase. You have to hurry though, as the offer may expire at any moment.

Why you should buy the Alienware M18x gaming laptop
The Alienware M18x is an extremely powerful machine that challenges the performance of the high-end models of the best gaming laptops. The Nvidia GeForce RTX 4090 graphics card, when combined with the 14th-generation Intel Core i9 processor and 64GB of RAM, allows the Alienware M18x to not only run the best PC games at their most demanding settings, but also sets you up for upcoming PC games of the next few years. Gaming laptops are generally more difficult to upgrade than gaming PCs, but that won't be an issue in the near-term with the Alienware M18x.

Read more