Pine64 the creator and manufacturer of the $100 Pinebook Linux laptop has this week announced it will soon be releasing CPU upgrade kits for the laptop during the first quarter of 2020. Enabling Pinebook Pro-like performance to the first-gen PineBook Linux laptop without the need to upgrade the whole system.
The announcement follows on from the launch earlier this year of the $200 Pinebook Pro laptop which offers a metal case construction and is powered by a Rockchip RK3399 hexa-core processor, offering 2 x 1.8 GHz ARM Cortex-A72 CPU cores, and four 1.4 GHz Cortex-A53 cores supported by 4GB of RAM and equipped with 64GB of eMMC 5.0 storage. Pine64 explains a little more about the latest developments from the company and the new upgrade kit being created for the original Pinebook Linux laptop.
“Our core focus for the past month was on getting the manufacturing process and shipping of the Pinebook Pro, PinePhone and PineTime development kits back on track. With the Pinebook Pros and PineTime development kits now shipped, and with the PinePhone developer edition now shipping, I feel that we’ve done a good job in handling the situation.
For those of you looking to have more choice of operating systems, you’re in luck as many partner-project OS developers are now starting to receive their Pinebook Pros. It will obviously take them some time to bring support to the platform – this doesn’t just happen overnight – but I am happy to say that we expect to see Manjaro, Kali Linux, Q4OS (Debian), Fedora, KDE Neon as well as (hopefully) Ubuntu MATE OS images on the Pinebook Pro in the foreseeable future. The same is true for BSD OS images, but I have a much less knowledge regarding the BSD communities and their development cycles, so I cannot comment on a prospective roadmap. Regardless of how things pan out for the individual projects, I expect there to be considerably more OS choices available in January of 2020.
When we first announced the Pinebook Pro we made a commitment to those of you with the original Pinebook (featuring the Allwinner A64) that it will be possible to upgrade existing Pinebooks to Pro-esque versions. We have since struggled with two engineering issues to make this a reality, the most important of which is heat-dissipation of the RK3399 in a plastic shell. It now looks like we’ve cracked this issue by using heat dissipating metal foil and a thermal pad. Provided that this solution holds up under testing, you can expect the upgrade kit in Q1 2020. We hope that by providing this kit we not only cater to our community but also do our part in reducing the number of OG Pinebooks ending up in landfills.“
For more information on the new Pinebook Linux laptop upgrade kit jump over to the official Pine64 blog.