Raspberry Pi Launches a $70 PC in a Keyboard

Posted on November 2, 2020 by Paul Thurrott in Dev, Hardware with 34 Comments

Taking a design cue from the Commodore and Amiga computers of the 1980s and 1990s, Raspberry Pi today announced a $70 PC in a keyboard form factor.

“Raspberry Pi has always been a PC company,” Raspberry Pi founder and CEO Eben Upton writes in the announcement post. “Inspired by the home computers of the 1980s, our mission is to put affordable, high-performance, programmable computers into the hands of people all over the world. And inspired by these classic PCs, here is Raspberry Pi 400: a complete personal computer, built into a compact keyboard.”

Aside from its cute all-in-one form factor, the Raspberry Pi 400 is also the most powerful computer that the firm has ever shipped: It features a faster and cooler version of the Raspberry Pi 4 mini-computer board that shipped back in May, with 4 GB of RAM, integrated into a compact keyboard design.

Optionally, you can also purchase this system as part of a ready-to-go Raspberry Pi 400 Personal Computer Kit for $100. This kit includes the Raspberry Pi 400 computer, the official Raspberry Pi USB mouse and USB-C power supply, an SD card with Raspberry Pi OS pre-installed, a micro-HDMI to HDMI cable, and the official Raspberry Pi Beginner’s Guide. That guide has been updated to a 4th edition that includes information specific to the Raspberry Pi 400.

How cool!

Tagged with ,

Join the discussion!


Don't have a login but want to join the conversation? Become a Thurrott Premium or Basic User to participate

Comments (38)

38 responses to “Raspberry Pi Launches a $70 PC in a Keyboard”

  1. red.radar

    I have enjoyed my raspberry pi 4 and it makes a cost effective internet terminal for the workshop where I may have a fair amount of debris and dust flying around.

    great for ... where is that YouTube video or PDF that show me how to do ....X.....

  2. rfeeley

    This will sell, for same Reason Vic20 and Commodore 64 became best selling computers ever. Compact, self-contained, with everything you need. $100 is impulse price. Perfect for all, but especially needed by low to middle income students right now.

  3. rmlounsbury

    I'm absolutely going to pick up one of these to tinker with. I've never actually had a Raspberry Pi before since I haven't had any specific use cases for it. If nothing else I can pair this up with my ThinkVision screen for casual tinkering with the Raspberry Pi OS or even grab the Ubuntu distro built for Pi to dabble in that space as well.

    If nothing else, as noted, this is a really great and cheap way for a kids to have their own computer that they can start learning basic coding skills if they are interested.

  4. ronh

    Looks nice, but I would like to see what it looks like with all the cables and a monitor plugged in to get it up and running. It may make a mess of your desktop space.

    It should have a trackpad built in as well...

  5. jimchamplin

    The 4GB model i believe is the minimum to run Windows 10, which can be done via a community project.

  6. sekim

    I came here to say that the concept made me nostalgic for my Amiga 500, but saw I was beat to that punch in the first sentence of the article.

  7. kjb434

    I have a Raspberry Pi is use as a Pi-Hole (all purpose DNS blocker) device. Seriously, if you ever needed a reason to play with a Raspberry Pi, look into Pi-Hole.

    This keyboard Pi would be a great way to upgrade.

    If the Edge Chromium browser for Linux was ready, I would consider this being an alternative to a Chromebook.

  8. bluvg

    The kit also matches the price I paid for my C64. Ah, simpler times.

    • Paul Thurrott

      The Commodore 64 launched at $599, so this must have been quite some time into its run.
      • bluvg

        In reply to paul-thurrott:

        I thought it was $99 in the Sears catalog at the time, but I could be wrong. You're right, it was a ways into its run, as the 128 was in the same catalog. It was a bummer programming on it initially, since I couldn't afford any peripherals besides the RF modulator to hook it up to the TV. Turn off the power and lose the program. :)

        I have some fond memories of the C64 (mostly games, little bit of GEOS), but I have far fonder memories of the Amiga 500. I do not miss my slowwwwww and expensive-to-operate Okimate thermal printer, though the output was impressive at the time.

        • Paul Thurrott

          The price absolutely came down over time. I'm sure the C64C launched at $99 or $149 tops. I can't even find this information for some reason. Was also a fan/user of GEOS. Amazing.
  9. crisp

    There was a Windows 10 IoT for Raspberry up to 3 and then an Insider version... how long until someone is running Win10 and .net apps on this? Over to you Paul...

  10. lightbody

    Given that its British, its much closer in inspiration to the famous ZX Spectrum - which was also an "everything in the keyboard" design.

  11. retcable

    Luckily it does have a GPIO connector on the back, but my HifiBerry DAC2-HD card is going to look a bit odd at a 90 degree angle when plugged into it. Oh well, it will be worth it to have the great audio those little things are capable of putting out. And the whole Raspberry Pi situation is getting better now that Ubuntu has released an official version of their OS for the RPi4.

  12. the escalation

    I don't need this. But I want this.

  13. lwetzel

    These are great devices. Not so much power but functional and even enough machines for a many people.

  14. obarthelemy

    "Taking a design cue from the Commodore and Amiga computers of the 1980s and 1990s,".

    Nope, from Sinclair computers ! This looks like my Spectrum, and probably feels like my ZX-81, only with a simpler/slower keyboard ;-p

    One good thing is the built-in cooler, the Pi4 has a significant heat issue and requires 3rd-party cooler. This makes the keyboard version almost free.

    2 bad things: this is the 4GB version, hopefully the 8GB version which is in high demand will follow at some point; also, for an unfathomable reason they aren't wiring up the audio jack, which sound idiotic given the very sad state of monitors' built-in speakers. Hopefully your monitor will have a pass-through jack.

  15. wright_is

    Taking a design cue from the Commodore and Amiga

    It looks a lot more like an Oric to me. Or an Acorn Atom or the first Acorn Archimedes (the first ever PC to use the ARM chip).

    Personally, I'd love it to use the case from the Memotech MTX, lovely black, brushed aluminium case and a decent keyboard. I love that design. (For an extra 5 nerd points, it was used in the film Wierd Science)

  16. jwpear

    Definitely a nice way to package up the Pi. Just got my Pi 4 board yesterday. Can't wait to play around with it some with my son.

  17. crunchyfrog

    Now that's clever! I like the concept a lot instead of having to piece it all together. Only issue I see is the limited RAM, small keyboard size and it's not listed on Amazon.

Leave a Reply