Model A of the credit-card sized computer has been stripped off its Ethernet port and a USB port thus leaving just one USB port. This model comes with 256MB RAM but, as it is less complex compared to its predecessor it will consume lesser power thus opening up quite a few new usage scenarios. The Foundation has posted the first image of the $25 Model A on its site and noted “We’re anticipating that those of you who buy the Model A will be using it for different applications from Model B owners.”
The board used for the Model A is the same as that of Model B. One would assume that a custom PCB without the Ethernet circuitry would have been a cheaper option but, the Foundation has revealed that because of the production volumes of the PCB they have stuck to the same board for the Model A.
“Because of the volumes we’re producing, it’s actually less expensive for us to use the existing PCB we use for the Model B, and just not populate the ethernet part of the board, than to lay-out and separately manufacture a new PCB just for the Model A”, notes the Foundation.
Production for Model A would have started earlier but, because of the extensive demand of Model B and the backlog, the Foundation wasn’t able to go for production of the cheaper variant. According to Liz Upton, the Foundation’s community head said, “We’re hoping to get them off the line and into the hands of our distributors early in the new year.”