Rockchip RK3036 Android 4.4 TV Boxes with H.265 Codec Support To Sell for $10

Rockchip announced RK3368 64-bit processor yesterday for mid-range tablets and 4K media player, but the company also have some new ultra low cost TV box and HDMI TV stick solution with Rockchip RK3036 dual core Cortex A7 processor that will go into $9.9 TV boxes running Android 4.4. The price is most probably factory price, but that means $20 H.265/HEC capable Android media players are probably around the corner. You can already get an RK3066 TV dongle (MK808 and similar) for less than $30 in Aliexpress, so the new solution will likely decrease the price by $5 to $10.


Technical specifications of RK3036 reference design:

  • SoC – Rockchip RK3036 dual core Cortex A7 processor @ up to 1.2 GHz with Mali-400MP GPU
  • System Memory – 256MB DDR3 or DDR3L
  • Storage – 2GB flash. RK3036 supports MLC NAND, eMMC 4.5.
  • Video & Audio Output – HDMI 1.4a. The chip also supports CVBS, and optical S/PDIF.
  • (Main) Video Codecs – 1080p multi format decoder including H.265 / H.264 codecs. H.264 encoding.
  • Connectivity – 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi (possibly using Expressif ESP8089). The chip also supports 10/100M Ethernet
  • USB – 1x USB 2.0 port. (Two USB interfaces are provided by the SoC)

The RAM is really on the low side, but Rockchip has said they further optimized Android 4.4 to run on 256 MB RAM. Lots of apps will probably fail to run properly on this platform, and such device should be mostly reserved to video playback. I’m not even quite sure Kodi would run with that little RAM.

A few more details may eventually be added to RK3036 product page.
[Update: Just to get a better grasp to what might be the actual online retail price. Rockchip announced $10 RK2928 miracast dongles in 2013, which are now selling for $16 to $20 shipped, so something around $20 to $25 on Aliexpress should be feasible on RK3036 devices become available]

Via Liliputing

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26 Replies to “Rockchip RK3036 Android 4.4 TV Boxes with H.265 Codec Support To Sell for $10”

  1. I don’t know where do you come with these prices, but for me $10 is already expensive, I bet this board will be released for $3 (c’mon guys check the memory prices, this board will be with BOM $15 or more, to claim someone will sell it for $10 is quite unrealistic and misleading)

  2. @Tsvetan
    well last weekend, i just got my hands on a RK3128 device, H265 capable device, and it cost 100CN(<20USD) with shipping in china.
    Configuration of 512MB RAM, 8GB ROM. after opening the box, it came with SCSsemicon ram, skhynix NAND, wifi chip ESP8089

    soo…. $10 for the board with that spec, AT A BULK PRICE, is realistic and feasible, IMO
    i would assume retail price @ <$15.

    P.S. its running Baidu/Alibaba YUNos, based on android 4.4(checked with antutu).
    P.P.S does any one know any Creative common H.265 1080p Video?

  3. P.P.P.S RK3128 is the quad core cortex A7 version of RK3036. the price tag surely meant for distributor not consumer

  4. @cnxsoft

    1. Any late news on the $10 or so price for the RK3066 dual board?

    2. Are 256MB enough for SPMC if not Kodi?

  5. @cnxsoft
    I think the board has been canceled. No work at all for 9 months now.
    I also wonder whether the processor itself has been canceled, as there’s nothing at all on Internet about upcoming products.

  6. @cnxsoft

    OK, thanks. Is there a good tutorial on Android hacking somewhere?

    I guess both RK3066+ and S905L will be used to build sub$20 products by this summer.

    Looks like these chips are ahead of H3/5 with mainlining. Armlogic itself seems quite hacker friendly, and Rockchips are getting there. The V88 RK3229 is pre rooted according to a popular YouTube review.

    It is interesting to see how these Android boxes now cost same BoM, maybe less, than their xPi board comparables, as finished products that are sold in quantity, have active communities including cnxsoft, and come with own power supply, remote control and other accessories ( e.g., game pads, keyboards, VR.)

    Just as hackers initially used cheap routers with OpenWrt, these hackable Androids will become quite popular, since they can be used as set top boxes that, besides TV-video-game streaming, can additionally control many other media or IoT chips and devices like ESP, Omega2, xPis and USB cams, with node.js, MQTT scripts, and some Linux updates to control IR- BT and USB- Wifi – Ethernet client-server configuration.

    Maybe some are powerful enough to run several VM or Docker instances. The huge Android app space doesn’t hurt.

  7. @cnxsoft

    One more: Do you know if you can use external Wifi antennas with these cheap Android boxes e.g , V88 RK?

    Do you need to disable/bypass internal PCB antennas first?

  8. @Athar
    Some boards include an u.FL connector so it’s easy to replace the antenna. Otherwise you may have to solder you own antenna. I think there’s no need to remove the PCB antenna. I’ve seen boards with both.

  9. @cnxsoft

    Read the press release. Do you know how much will it cost?

    The $10 board was a fantastic idea…

  10. Hi,

    1. Where can I purchase a this board?
    2. Does it come with supporting SW?

    Thanks, Yehuda

    1. I’m not sure it’s available (anymore). It appears all RK3036 devices are Miracast/DLNA dongles now.

      1. Thank you.
        In case I would like to develop an application based on the RK3036, to whom should I approach in order to get such development board?

        1. I can’t see any easily procurable RK3036 development boards. Rockchip seems to have their Kylin board, but I don’t see it anywhere for sale. If you represent a company, you may try to contact Rockchip. If you are an individual or a company with a small volume project, they may ignore you though.

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