Raspberry Pi doubles the RAM, but resists price hike

Rather than add a more-expensive Raspberry Pi, the cheap Linux device's backers have bumped up the memory in the current Model B to 512MB as standard.

People who buy a Raspberry Pi will now get 512MB of RAM as standard, twice as much as before, the backers of the cheap Linux computer have revealed.

The upgrade to the Model B version of the Raspberry Pi kicks in on Monday at distributors Element 14/Premier Farnell and RS Components, according to the device's creator Eben Upton.

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The Model B Raspberry Pi will come with 512MB of RAM from now on. Image: Charles McLellan

"If you have an outstanding order with either distributor, you will receive the upgraded device in place of the 256MB version you ordered," Upton said in a post to the Raspberry Pi blog. "Units should start arriving in customers' hands today, and we will be making a firmware upgrade available in the next couple of days to enable access to the additional memory."

The move follows suggestions from fans that the Raspberry Pi Foundation should make a more-expensive 'Model C' version of the £25 device with more RAM, he noted. This would let them run several large applications at the same time and boost its use as a general purpose computer.

"The downside of this suggestion for us is that we're very attached to $35 as our highest price point," Upton said.

The Raspberry Pi was developed as a cheap device for kids to learn programming on, and it was designed to keep manufacturing down — for example, it initially did not come with MPEG-2 support for this reason.

One other untrumpeted shift in the Model Bs now being shipped is that they come with a Samsung chip, rather than the Hynix product seen earlier.