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OpenPandora relaunch opens pre-orders

OpenPandora relaunch opens pre-orders

The OpenPandora hand-held console is ready for relaunch, with pre-orders opening now.

The OpenPandora project, which aims to create a hand-held console capable of running a full Linux install, has announced that it is taking pre-orders for a second production run.

For the uninitiated, the OpenPandora features a 4.3in touch-screen running at 800x480, a Texas Instruments OMAP3350 ARM Cortex-A8-based system-on-chip running at 600MHz with PowerVR SGX graphics, and 256MB of RAM. Storage is taken care of by 512MB of NAND flash integral to the device, along with two SDHC card slots at the front of the unit.

Designed as both a highly portable computing platform and an open gaming platform, the system features dual analogue thumbsticks, an eight-way D-pad, and four buttons. For more professional uses, a QWERTY keyboard is included.

Although the specifications of the device might seem a little weak compared to the far more powerful Sony's PlayStation Vita and lack the 3D magic of Nintendo's 3DS, according to the project's own figures a single charge of the device's battery will give it a ten hour lifespan.

If that's not enough, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity is built in as standard, along with USB 2.0 host support and connectivity for hooking the device up to a TV for big-screen gaming.

Designed primarily for homebrew or emulator use, the system allows the user to choose between a custom GUI dubbed 'Lucid' and aimed at gamers or a fully-functional Xfce-based Linux desktop environment compatible with web browsers, office applications and even compilers and IDEs for working on your own code while out and about.

Since the first revision of the hardware began shipping in May 2010, around 2,800 units have been sold. Production issues marred the launch, however, leading to this relaunch of the device using a hopefully more reliable German production facility.

To encourage growth in the project, OpenPandora's founder has launched a competition for software developers to create something for the platform. With prizes including limited edition hardware, it's worth a glimpse if you're at all into coding.

If you're just interested in using the thing, there is one small catch: the price. At €445 (around £370,) the OpenPandora is the most expensive hand-held console around. If that doesn't put you off, more information is available on the official website.

Tempted to get your hands on the most open portable gaming platform ever, or has the high price put you off? Share your thoughts over in the forums.

17 Comments

Discuss in the forums Reply
MrJay 2nd February 2012, 14:43 Quote
450 Euros....
jcb121 2nd February 2012, 21:15 Quote
Me want,

Is there any improvements in this Pandora over the older Pandora?
XXAOSICXX 2nd February 2012, 21:30 Quote
We'll see this article...and then we'll never see it again until, of course, it's pulled from the market in a couple of years.

What an epic waste of money.
Fizzban 2nd February 2012, 21:51 Quote
'Texas Instruments'

They still exist? wow
Herbicide 3rd February 2012, 08:07 Quote
Hmm... what about those of us that pre-ordered the first time, but still haven't got one?
GuilleAcoustic 3rd February 2012, 08:33 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fizzban
'Texas Instruments'

They still exist? wow

Texas instrument makes the OMAP CPU used in many smartphones. They also makes great high-end audio components under their Burr Brown brand. Texas is a great component maker ... they don't only manfacture calculators :( ... just take a look at their website before posting such useless comment.

* Sorry, but this kind of comment tend to drive me crazy *
* The first step to wisdom is to admit that we do not know *
[-Stash-] 3rd February 2012, 10:00 Quote
When you see a RaspberryPi for $35 (http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/pcs/2012/01/26/raspberry-pi-modders-dream-machine/1) you have to wonder what's causing this to cost £370!

Sure, screen, battery, case - but really? ZTE can put together a fully fledged phone with similar specs for £100 and an Xbox controller costs what? £18?

Does volume and scale really *make* £250's worth of difference?

I can't wait to see the modders make something better than this using the RaspberryPi for £100-£200.
eVoPhantom 3rd February 2012, 10:29 Quote
What kind of emulators does it support? The only real experience with emulators I have is WINUAE and SCUMMVM.

It does seem very pricey though.
GuilleAcoustic 3rd February 2012, 10:43 Quote
I was interested in it ... but a few years ago ! With Rpi around the corner and smartphone with full keybord I really do not see any interest in this Pandora anymore, especially considering the price. Too bad, because I really was a FAN.
crudbreeder 3rd February 2012, 10:55 Quote
Yes, volume and scale can really make £250's worth of difference.
The BIG manufacturers literally pay peanuts for their components compared to what you pay buying from retailers or smaller wholesale dealers. Simply because they buy thousands of them at a time, and might by a thousand other components in the same volumes from the same supplyer.
GuilleAcoustic 3rd February 2012, 11:03 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by crudbreeder
Yes, volume and scale can really make £250's worth of difference.
The BIG manufacturers literally pay peanuts for their components compared to what you pay buying from retailers or smaller wholesale dealers. Simply because they buy thousands of them at a time, and might by a thousand other components in the same volumes from the same supplyer.

Agreed :) ! I saw that with Burr Brown component that can trully cost an arm when bought in small quantity.
Fizzban 3rd February 2012, 13:45 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by GuilleAcoustic
Texas instrument makes the OMAP CPU used in many smartphones. They also makes great high-end audio components under their Burr Brown brand. Texas is a great component maker ... they don't only manfacture calculators :( ... just take a look at their website before posting such useless comment.

* Sorry, but this kind of comment tend to drive me crazy *
* The first step to wisdom is to admit that we do not know *

I don't follow smart phones and such. It has been ages since I'd heard of them so I posted. So sorry for posting such a 'useless comment'. Shame you had to spoil what was otherwise an informative post with that remark.
GuilleAcoustic 3rd February 2012, 14:06 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fizzban
I don't follow smart phones and such. It has been ages since I'd heard of them so I posted. So sorry for posting such a 'useless comment'. Shame you had to spoil what was otherwise an informative post with that remark.

Sorry matey, no offence ... All apologies, trully.

I'm quite the pationate and sometimes words and finger go faster than my thought :( . They are still alive and make nice piece of hardware :o.
Fizzban 3rd February 2012, 15:51 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by GuilleAcoustic
Sorry matey, no offence ... All apologies, trully.

I'm quite the pationate and sometimes words and finger go faster than my thought :( . They are still alive and make nice piece of hardware :o.

An apology was the last thing I expected. A nice surprise! Thank you mate. :)

Perhaps I was being overly touchy. Not slept well in days. Thanks for being a decent sort. Do love this community!

+rep
fluxtatic 4th February 2012, 07:13 Quote
Guille, Fizzban, I hate to have to be the one to break this to you, but this here is the internets. Now, either get into a ridiculous, juvenile flamewar (bonus points for bad spelling, bad grammar, and Nazi references) or GTFO. Gotdamn hippies, working out your differences and coming to an understanding >:(

:D

I got a chubby when I saw this. Then I saw the pricetag. Now it's like my poor l'il guy is trying to crawl back home. :( Like Stash said, sure, until RPi came along. I could likely scavenge parts and hack something close enough together for $100. And have an assload more fun doing it, too...maybe not the gaming parts (I'm no Ben Heck, after all), but the KB at least, and I have no desire for a portable gaming machine anyway. (No use for one, really, now that I have a car - would have been kind of kickass when I used to ride the bus 2-3 hours a day, though.)
rayson 4th February 2012, 19:24 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by GuilleAcoustic
Texas instrument makes the OMAP CPU used in many smartphones. They also makes great high-end audio components under their Burr Brown brand. Texas is a great component maker ... they don't only manfacture calculators :( ... just take a look at their website before posting such useless comment.

* Sorry, but this kind of comment tend to drive me crazy *
* The first step to wisdom is to admit that we do not know *

you're such a legend
GuilleAcoustic 4th February 2012, 20:35 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by rayson
you're such a legend

I was driven by passion and kind of over reacted. That's my post that is useless and that's why I presented all my sincere apologies.
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