Planet Computers has designed several unique computing devices over the years such as the Cosmo Communicator 2-in-1 smartphone and computer or Astro Slide 5G transformer smartphone, and the British company has now come up with a mini PC preloaded with Ubuntu with a touchscreen screen interface, dual 4K/8K video output, dual Gigabit Ethernet and more.
PlanetPC XR1/XR2 specifications:
- PlanetPC XR1 – Rockchip RK3568 quad-core Cortex-A55 processor up to 2.0 GHz with Arm Mali-G52 2EE, 0.8 TOPS NPU
- PlanetPC XR2 – Rockchip 3588 octa-core Cortex-A76/A55 processor up to 2.4 GHz with Arm Mali-G610 MP4 GPU, 6 TOPS NPU
- System Memory & Storage
- PlanetPC XR1
- 4GB LPDDR4
- 32GB eMMC flash
- Optional 512GB, 1TB, 2TB M.2 NVMe
- Optional up to 14TB SATA HDD or 2TB SATA SSD
- PlanetPC XR2
- 4GB LPDDR4, 8GB LPDDR4x, 16GB LPDDR5, or 32GB LPDDR5
- 32GB, 64GB, 128GB, or 256GB eMMC flash
- Optional 256GB, 512GB, or 1TB M.2 SSD
- MicroSD card slot
- PlanetPC XR1
- Video Output
- PlanetPC XR1 – 1x HDMI port (4K)
- PlanetPC XR2 – 2x HDMI ports (4K and 8K) and VGA
- Video Input (XR2 only) – 4Kp60 HDMI input port
- Audio – Stereo speakers, built-in microphone, 3x 3.5mm audio jacks for headphones, microphone, etc…
- Display – 1424 x 280 color touchscreen display
- 2x Gigabit Ethernet ports
- WiFI 6 and Bluetooth 5.0 module
- Optional 4G LTE/5G via SIM slot
- PlanetPC XR1 – 2x USB 3.0 Type-A ports, 3x USB 2.0 Type-A ports, 1x USB 2.0 Type-C port
- PlanetPC XR2 – 4x USB 3.0 Type-A ports, 1x USB 2.0 Type-A port, 1x USB 3.0 Type-C port, 1x USB 2.0 Type-C port
- Misc – Power button, 16x RGB LED strip
- Dimensions – 29 x 26 x 6 cm
Both the PlanetPC XR1 and XR2 will ship with Ubuntu 20.04, and the company claims “zero configuration” as in Linux works out of the box, and support for Internet relay and VPN, network disk function, etc… It’s unclear whether the touchscreen display is customizable or you would have to go with the user interface defined by Planet Computers.
The PlanetPC XR2 is also the very first RK3588 mini PC that can actually be purchased with 32GB RAM. Others have claimed up to 32GB RAM support, but they did not offer their hardware for sale with that memory capacity. It should be noted that the XR2 port layout looks exactly the same as the port layout for the Firefly-ITX3588J motherboard.
Charbax also interviewed Planet Computers at MWC 2023, and they have the XR1 “running” on-site, but in the video, they only connected the power to demo the touchscreen display, and other ports are not used, so there may be more work to do on the Linux side for them to be ready to show it…
But I guess that’s OK because the XR1 and XR2 are not available yet, and are up for pre-orders on Planet Computers website or on Indiegogo crowdfunding platform. Pricing is on the high side with the PlanetPC XR1 starting at $613 and the PlanetPC XR2 at $773 in 4GB/32GB configuration on the company’s store, but it’s cheaper, albeit still pricey, on Indiegogo with the XR1 offered for $463 and the XR2 for $659, and if you’d like a Rockchip RK3588 mini PC with 32GB RAM and 512GB eMMC flash, you’ll be asked to pledge $1,189 and up. Shipping adds $30 to $72 depending on the destination country.
Based on the amount pledged on Indiegogo so far ($772), few people seem interested probably because of the price tag that is must higher than equivalent touchscreen-less Arm Linux mini PCs, and the mixed history of Planet Computers with their other crowdfunding campaigns that were quite popular, but deliveries were frequently delayed, and some users complain they have not received their reward after three years.
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.