Droid Stick A2 mini-PC Unboxing

Droid Stick A2 is an HDMI TV Stick based on AMLogic AML8726-MX dual core Cortex A9 processor, and together with HI-802 (aka GK802) mini-PC based on Freescale i.MX6Q, is the most likely platform to get proper Linux support, as AMLogic AML8726-MX source code is somewhat open, and video playback in Linux is supported in the older AML8726-M1 processor (Cf. XBMC Linux in Pivos STB).

Kimdecent sent me a sample for evaluation, but as the Android firmware is not really ready for prime-time at this time, I’ll just show some pictures of the device, as well as the user interface, and will review the device once a firmware update is available.

Since this is still a sample, I received the device in a white box with the Droid Stick A2, a mini USB to USB cable, a small 5.2V/1A power supply and a plug adapter.

Droid Stick A2 and Accessories

There are plenty of ventilation hole for cooling the device, and this is the first mini-PC I’ve seen that has been designed to be easily attached to a keyring.

Droid Stick A2 has a male HDMI connector, an “Update” button, an IR jack, a 5+V mini USB OTG port, a USB 2.0 Host port and a microSD card socket.

There’s not much we can see from the PCB, as a heatsink almost completely covers the top of the board.

Top of Droid Stick A2 Board – Click to Enlarge

The microSD socket, flash and RAM are soldered at the bottom of the board.

Bottom of Droid Stick A2 Board – Click to Enlarge

Beside the heatsink, they also added 2 heat conductive rubber pads, so it looks like a lot of efforts were put into cooling the device.

Time to put this all back together, insert the mini-PC into the HDMI socket of my TV and connect the power supply. I’ve also tried to power the device with the TV USB port, and the boot will start, but like most other devices (excluding Telechips TCC8925 based devices such as CX-01) the boot won’t complete, so the external power supply is really needed.

Droid Stick A2 User Interface

This HDMI TV stick features a proper media player interface adapted to TV usage with access to music, videos, the picture gallery, a file manager, the stock browser, Android settings and Android apps. The interface is better suited for a remote control than a mouse, and you can’t add shortcuts, so you have to click on the Android doll each time you want to launch an app. The “About MediaBox” menu indicates the model number is MBX Dongle board (g02refDongle), and the current firmware runs Android 4.1.2 with Kernel 3.0.8.

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rm
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Wow the interface is such a terrible idea. I thought imitations of physical desktop/rooms went out of fashion in 1995
https://encrypted.google.com/search?q=Microsoft+Bob&hl=en&tbo=d&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ei=rHLBUPuXDceBhQf_hIHIDg&ved=0CAcQ_AUoAA&biw=1280&bih=927

Indeed the authors seem to be such devote microsoft fans, that it even uses the copyrighted/trademarked IE logo. Legal issues aside, I’d say for many this would be a turn-off, “this one runs Internet Explorer? eww, not buying”.

mj
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mj

@rm The main market is China where IE is still quite used: still 21% of IE6 http://www.ie6countdown.com/

Secondly, what’s the easiest way to represent Internet with a Logo ?

Gabe
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Gabe

Is the software not stable or why isn’t it ready? What is that icon with an exclamation mark to the left of the clock?

Gavin
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Gavin

Only 1 amp, are you sure? I’ve only seen 5V/2A for these mini PCs.

Gabe
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Gabe

Do you know what WIFI chipset does it have? Where is the antenna located( I can’t see it in the pictures)? How fast is the WIFI download speed(if you managed to run a download test)?

Gabe
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Gabe

@cnxsoft
Here is an another Amlogic-MX board, I think it has a chip antenna(the component circled with red, see picture below):
http://i50.tinypic.com/ngofg1.gif

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[…] the beginning of December 2012, I wrote a post about Droid Stick A2 mini PC based on AMLogic AML-8726-MX to show some pictures of the device, but I could not really […]