Banana Pi BPI-R1 board was launched in 2014 with 5 Gigabit Ethernet ports, SATA interfaces, and powered by Allwinner A20 board. SinoVoip his now about to launch an updated version – Banana Pi BPI-R2 – powered by Mediatek MT7623A quad core Cortex A7 processor with 2GB RAM, 8GB flash, 5 Gigabit Ethernet ports, up to 2 SATA connectors, mPCIe, USB 3.0, and more.
- SoC – MediaTek MT7623A quad-code ARM Cortex-A7 processor @ up to 1.3 GHz with Mali 450 MP4 GPU
- System Memory – 2GB DDR3 SDRAM
- Storage – 8GB eMMC flash (option 16/32/64GB), up to 2x SATA interfaces, micro SD slot up to 256GB expansion
- Video Output / Display I/F – HDMI 1.4 up to 1920×1200, MIPI DSI connector
- Connectivity – 5x 10/100/1000 Mb Ethernet port (via MT7530), Bluetooth 4.1 & dual band 802.11b/g/n WiFi (MT6625L module)
- USB – 2x USB 3.0 ports, 1x micro USB 2.0 OTG port
- Expansion – Mini PCIE interface, 40-pin “somewhat Raspberry Pi 3 compatible” GPIO header with UART, I2C, SPI, PWM, I2S…
- Misc – Power, reset, uboot, and 2x user buttons; LEDs; IR receiver; 5V fan header; debug UART pins
- Power Supply – 12/2A via power barrel; 6-pin miniJST header for battery + built-in 3.7V Lithium battery charging circuit
- Dimensions – 148 x 100.5 mm
The company claims the board can run Android 5.1, OpenWrt, Debian, Ubuntu Linux, Raspbian and others operating systems. Some (limited) hardware information is available on the Wiki, but there’s nothing about software right now, apart from a few placeholder links.
There’s no info about availability nor pricing, except the hardware is ready, but the company has been working for the last month or so on operating systems and drivers. It’s not the first board to feature a Mediatek MT762x processor, but previous attempts like FireWrt, MQmaker WiTi board, and Geek Force did not end up being a commercial success. One of the reasons, at least for FireWrt, was the high cost of Mediatek processors in low quantities, but since SinoVoip has a close relationship with Foxconn, they may be able to leverage their purchasing power as the chip should be used in other hardware platforms manufactured by Foxconn.
[Update: Banana Pi BPI-R2 is now sold on Aliexpress for $89.50 + shipping]