Khadas VIM3 SBC Launched with Amlogic A311D Processor, 5 TOPS NPU

Khadas VIM3 Amlogic-A311D SBC

We’ve previously written about Khadas VIM3 Amlogic S922X development board and revealed the price tag for VIM3 Basic ($69.99) and VIM3 Pro ($99.99) with a launch date announced for June 24. As time has passed, this has become “fake news” except for the launch date, as Khadas VIM3 SBC has indeed launched but for $99.99 (Basic) and $139.99 (Pro). What’s going on? Why the large price increase? That’s because Khadas team has decided to provide a more powerful platform to the community, and replace Amlogic S922X processor with Amlogic A311D processor boasting higher clock speeds and a 5.0 TOPS NPU. Another version may also become available later on with the soon-to-be-released Amlogic S922X-B processor whose Cortex-A73 cores are clocked at up to 2.2 GHz, instead of 1.7 GHz for the original Amlogic S922X processor that will be referred to Amlogic S922X-A in the future. New Khadas VIM3 SBC specifications: SoC – Amlogic A311D hexa-core processor with 4x Arm Cortex-A73 cores …

Google to Roll Out RCS App as an Alternative to SMS

The Rich Communication Services (RCS) is a messaging platform that allows messaging from carrier to carrier and between phone and carrier, that is positioned to replace SMS but has had its share of pushback from the communication industry. The service has been around for a long time but had very little noteworthy attention since its inception in 2007.  Named the GSM Association in 2008, there were many upgrades, but three years after the GSMA formed the steering committee to oversee the project, the project platform was named Rich Communication Services and now called simply RCS. Between 2007 and the present there have been many versions of the RCS platform, and Google stepped in in 2010 and has been helping with updates right up into its announcement that it would be offering an opt-in version of the platform on all Android devices this month, June 2019, called RCS Chat. The advantages and features offered by RCS are group chat, chat, capability discovery, …

Ugoos X2 Cube Android 9.0 TV Box also Serves as a SAMBA Server

Ugoos X2 Cube

Ugoos X2 Cube is a tiny Android 9.0 TV box powered by the latest Amlogic S905X2 processor coupled with 2GB RAM and 16GB flash storage. The new Amlogic processor happens to have a USB 3.0 port which provides good storage performance, and the box is also equipped with a Gigabit Ethernet port, which should make the device especially suitable for network storage beside the usual 4K HDR video playback or streaming offered by any typical Amlogic S905X2 TV box. However in most cases, the firmware provided for such TV boxes does not offer an option to easily configure a SAMBA server (aka Windows network share), so you’d need to either mess up with the firmware configuration yourself, or install a paid app. Ugoos is different since they long have had the option to enable NFS & SAMBA client and/or server in the settings, and Ugoos X2 Cube is no different. Ugoos X2 Cube specifications: SoC – Amlogic S905X2 quad core …

Reolink Argus Eco Review – A Sub-$100 Solar Powered Security Camera

Reolink Argus Eco IP Camera Wall Mounted

I’ve been thinking about installing one or more IP camera in my home for a while, and for ease of installation and considering I’m renting, my preference was to go with one of those battery IP cameras similar to Amazon (Immedia) Blink IP camera or Eufy EverCam security camera that last six months to one year on a single charge. But earlier this year I came across Reolink Argus 2 battery powered security camera that looks like good value at $100, and also came with an optional solar panel so you don’t have to ever charge the camera.  The company latter contacted me to know whether I’d be willing to try out their latest Reolink Argus Eco camera with similar features but an even lower $89.99 price tag. I got my sample a few weeks ago, and I had time to install it, and play around with the camera during that time, so  I’m now ready to report my experience …

Strawberry4Pi Enables Home Automation on Raspberry Pi Boards (Crowdfunding)

Strawberry4Pi Boards

Strawberry4Pi is an ecosystem of hardware, firmware, and software to create home automation and IoT projects with for Raspberry Pi boards. The project offers a pre-configured Linux operating system, a mobile app for Android and iOS, as well as two boards with four relays: Strawberry4Pi baseboard Zero for Raspberry Pi Zero (W), and Strawberry4Pi shield A/B for the larger boards such as Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+ or Model A. Strawberry4Pi boards specifications: 4x SONGLE relays Misc – Temperature sensor and Wifi configuration button Power Supply Baseboard Zero – 100V-220V via 3-pin terminal block Shield A/B – 5V via 2-pin terminal block Dimensions Baseboard Zero – 97 x 75 mm Shield A/B – 65 x 56 mm Certifications – CE/FCC A 3D printed case and a DIN rail mount are also offered as options. There’s no a whole lot of information about the operating system as most people won’t need to mess with it, but I suppose it’s either based …

Ugoos AM6 Fanless S922X TV Box Launched for $150

Ugoos AM6 Fan-Cooled S922X TV Box

For those that have been waiting for the launch of the Ugoos AM6 S922X TV box, enough of the anticipation. The long wait is now finally over! Earlier in April, we reported the increased mass production of Amlogic processors. With the Ugoos AM6 taking the lead, producing a fan cooled prototype. We are pleased to inform you that a fanless version of the TV box has finally been released, and is available in the market for just $150. Also, we now have some photos of its enclosure While Beelink GT1-K launched around mid-April, its specifications are slightly different from Ugoos features. What Features to Expect from the new AM6 Main Features An Android 9.0 operating system. Fully equipped with the Amlogic S922X CPU, Quad core, ARM Cortex-A73, 1.7GHz + Dual-core ARM Cortex A53 1.8GHz. An ARM Mali-G52 MP6 ( 6ppc ) GPU Up to 2GB LPDDR4 RAM + 16GB EMMC ROM. In addition, approximately 2.4GHz + 5GHz dual band WiFi, …

Banana Pi BPI-M4 RPi 3+ Lookalike Board with 4K Video, M.2 Socket Launched for $38

Banana Pi BPI-M4

Banana Pi BPI-M4 was unveiled at the beginning of the year as an alternative to Raspberry Pi 3B+ with the same form factor, but equipped with a more capable processor, namely Realtek RTD1395 with support for 4K video output and decoding, Gigabit Ethernet support, PCIe, etc.. SinoVoIP has however made the choice not to go with Gigabit Ethernet, and opted for a cheaper design with Fast Ethernet instead. Having said that, the 4K capabilities of the processor, and PCIe via an M.2 socket are still leveraged in the company’s latest Banana Pi board. What’s changed is that Banana Pi BPI-M4 is now available on Aliexpress for $38 plus shipping in 1GB RAM + 8GB flash storage configuration. Banana Pi BPI-M4 specifications have not changed: SoC – Realtek RTD1395 quad-core Arm Cortex-A53 processor with Mali-470 MP4 GPU System Memory – 1 GB DDR4 (option 2 GB) Storage – 8G eMMC flash (max 64 GB), micro SD slot up to 256GB Video …

New Release (1.3.5) for H3Droid Android OS Optimized for Allwinner H3 & H2+ Processors

H3droid 1.3.5

H3Droid project provides Android images for Allwinner H3 & H2+ boards and TV boxes in order to improve on the firmware released by manufacturers. Last time we wrote about was in 2017, but the project released H3droid 1.3.5 recently with several improvements.. The good news is that more boards are supported with a bit fix that for example enables H3Droid to work on Orange Pi Zero (256MB RAM) and Libre Computer Tritium H2+ SBC’s, but the bad news is that it’s still based on Android 4.4 Kitkat, so some apps are not working anymore including Kodi, and the default YouTube app had to be removed since it does work not anymore. Workarounds do exist though, as you can install SPMC fork of Kodi, and play YouTube videos in a web browser, or install it manually after updating Google Play Services. Here’s the full changelog provided by the developers: Added: fex/uboot for: Beelink x2, Sunvell r69 and Libretech h3/h2+ (tritium) Added: …