Intel’s PC on a Stick, or rather, their Compute Stick was announced in January. We were also invited to their launch of the Compute Stick in Sri Lanka in April. The only issue with the launch back in April as that there was no mention of when it would be available to the general public. Well we were about to find out. Held at the CR and FC, the launch of the Compute Stick meant that it would now be available to Vendors and Resellers.
Indika De Zoysa, Country Business Manager – Sri Lanka at Intel EM Ltd was up on stage presenting the device after a brief introduction to Intel on their history and the evolution of their technology.
We take the most common thing on land; sand and make a very complex processor, that’s the Innovation at Intel.
What’s inside? – Intel…
The Compute Stick ships either with Windows 8.1 or Ubuntu and as such are priced accordingly with specifications to match. Both are powered by a Quad-core Intel® Atom™ Processor and comes with inbuilt memory and storage expandable via a Micro SD card. Inbuilt WiFi and Bluetooth means you can use it to connect to the internet and also to hook up a bluetooth keyboard and mouse. If all else fails and you find yourself facing a lack of USB ports, hook up a USB hub. For a full list of specifications, visit the Intel site.
The Compute Stick takes Plug and Play to a whole new level. Plug in the Stick to one of the HDMI ports in your display, connect the power adapter and you’re good to go. Mind you, the Compute stick can either be powered by the provided adapter or by connecting the Stick to a USB port in the display itself via a USB cable. The latter method only works in some displays; since the Compute Stick draws around 2 Amps of current and some displays aren’t capable of delivering this amount.
Now for the interesting stuff. When we inquired about the pricing, Indika said that Intel has no connection with regard to the pricing, but rather, that would be up to the retailers. But in general, the Windows version retails for around USD 140 while the Ubuntu version would retail at USD 120. Currently, Barclays Computers is advertising the Compute Stick but no pricing has been mentioned. The Stick comes with a 1-year warranty.
The Compute Stick is a versatile device offering seemingly endless possibilities. It is ideal for activities that require light to moderate usage such as Microsoft Office, looking at cat videos and surfing the Internet and even as a media center PC. Be warned though, you might experience slowdowns if you go on running multiple heavy applications.
“We shrunk the package, not the performance”.
It’s cheap, portable and very power efficient. Ideal for Labs at rural schools or even as a POS (point of sales system, the Intel Compute Stick has its winning points as well as drawbacks. Make sure it suits your workload to get the most out of it.