• Paul Fingleton

Raspberry Pi 2 to get Windows 10 for Free


Yesterday, Microsoft took a broad step to ensure that Windows 10 is used on the most devices possible and announced along with the charity behind the Raspberry Pi computer that Windows 10 will be available, free of charge, for registered developers.

The Raspberry Pi computer was originally designed to be a self-contained computer that could sell for around €20. It is not a computer as you would normally picture one because it ditched most of the things that would make it recognisable as a computer to most, things like a case. Yes, it is essentially a printed circuit board that house a fully functional computer. All that was needed for the owner to do was to have an SD card with an OS on it.

The goal for the Raspberry Pi is to get into the hands of tech enthusiasts and especially students and school children so they could study coding cheaply and affordably. And this is likely the drive behind Microsoft's move to get Windows 10 on to the new Raspberry Pi 2 - a significant upgrade with twice the RAM and a quad core ARM processor - students and schools.

If a student grows up learning how to program on Windows, they will likely stick with that as they grow up. Microsoft wouldn't want a new generation of kids to grow up only knowing Linux or Unix that they would otherwise have installed on these devices.

Another interesting fact for this is that since the Raspberri Pi has an ARM, not x86, CPU it means that those who buy the Raspberri Pi 2 will be running a version of Windows on ARM, essentially the successor to Windows RT and Windows Phone operating systems.

Because it has an ARMv7 processor, the new Raspberry Pi 2 is not limited to Windows 10 and can run the full range of ARM GNU/Linux distributions, including Snappy Ubuntu Core.

Raspberry Pi 2 is on sale for $35 (the same price as the existing Model B+), featuring:

  • A 900MHz quad-core ARM Cortex-A7 CPU (~6x performance)

  • 1GB LPDDR2 SDRAM (2x memory)

  • Complete compatibility with Raspberry Pi 1

Source: Microsoft, Raspberry Pi