Soap is a strange creature, and I’m not convinced there are that many use cases for such hardware, but I find it interesting that the developers decided to pack a Freescale i.MX6 Solo/Dual or Quad SoC powered Android 4.4 tablet and a router supporting five Gigabit Etherner ports, as well as WiFI 802.11ac, Wi-0Fi 802.11 b/g/n, Zigbee, Z-wave, Bluetooth 4.0 (BLE), Insteon RF, X10, 433Mhz, NFC, and infrared into one and only device which they call an “Intelligent Home Management Hub”. It’s also complete with an HDMI output port so that you can use it as a media player.
Let’s go through the specifications for the four version this little monster (Soap Solo, Soap Dual, Soap Quad, and Soap 8.4):
- Soap Solo – Freescale i.MX6 Solo single ARM Cortex A9 @ 1 GHz with Vivante GC880 3D GPU
- Soap Dual – Freescale i.MX6 Dual dual ARM Cortex A9 @ 1 GHz with Vivante GC2000 3D GPU
- Soap Quad and 8.4 – Freescale i.MX6 Quad quad ARM Cortex A9 @ 1 GHz with Vivante GC2000 3D GPU
- System Memory – Soap Solo: 1GB DDR3 @ 1066MHz, Others: 2GB DDR3 @ 1066MHz
- Soap Solo – 8GB internal storage,
- Soap Dual and Quad – 32GB internal storage
- Soap 8.4 – 32 GB internal storage, and 128GB SSD
- All – Internal micro SD card slot and SATA II connections
- Soap Solo/Dual/Quad – 7″ TFT LCD display; SVGA resolution (800×600)
- Soap 8.4 – 8.4 TFTP LCD display; SVGA resolution (800×600)
- Connectivity – 1x WAN Eternet port, 4x LAN Ethernet ports, 4 SMA antenna ports for a dual band 802.11ac Wi-Fi 4×4 MIMO module (Up to 1.3 Gb/s), and a dual band 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi module. Bluetooth 4.0 LE, Zigbee, Z-Wave, Insteon RF, X10 RF, 433MHz RF and NFC
- USB – 1x USB 2.0, 2x USB 3.0
- Video & Audio Output – HDMI
- Misc – Infrared sensor
The Freescale i.MX6 is brought to the device via Congatec SoM, probably their conga-qmx6 Q7 modules. Beside the Android kitkat tablet, router, home automation, and media player applications possible with this device, the developers are also promoting the device for its parental control abilities, controlling when you kids can play games by the touch of a button, preventing them to access not-safe-for-kids websites, and so on.
The project is now on Indiegogo (Fixed funding) where Soap’s designers plan to gather $42.000 or more to start production. Soap Solo starts at $240, Soap Dual at $280, Soap Quad at $360, and the most expensive option, Soap 8.4, will go for $500. Shipping to North America is $6, and $35 for the rest of the world. Delivered is scheduled for February 2015. Please note it’s not the first time the project is crowd-funded, as it was on KickStarter last March with perks at a much lower price point.
Via Hack a Day
Jean-Luc started CNX Software in 2010 as a part-time endeavor, before quitting his job as a software engineering manager, and starting to write daily news, and reviews full time later in 2011.