The Raspberry Pi is synonymous with small, handy and really, really useful.  You can use one to power all manner of different computer related projects and gadgetry.  The Raspberry Pi is not alone in the market and maybe it’s time to move over and let someone else take the helm. The new guy on the block is called the MIPS Creator CI20 – and it is not to be sniffed at either.  In fact, it’s more, more, more. The board has a more powerful processor than the Raspberry Pi, it has more memory and more onboard storage too. For the graphics, the Creator CI20 uses a version of the Imagination chip, which is also found inside the iPad.

The Raspberry Pi has already sold almost four millions units, so the market is growing and is a competitive one. The CI20 will cost you £50 ($65) and it can be ordered now, although the first units are not ready to be dispatched to customers until January of next year.

Hertfordshire-based company, Imagination, is primarily a chip designer. They are better known for drawing up specifications for processors that are used to handle graphics in Apple’s gadgets and other manufacturers products, rather than making tiny computers like the Creator CI20. A spokesman for Imagination, Tony King-Smith, said the CI20 is aimed at people who want a “high-performance” board for their development projects.

Imagination is entering a crowded market that is full of machines such as the Raspberry Pi, the BeagleBone Black, Arduino Uno and Intel’s Galileo and NUC devices. So will the Creator CI20 succeed?

The Creator CI20 is capable of running many different versions of the open source OS Linux and it can also run the latest edition of Google’s Android mobile OS. Imagination’s offering also has a built-in Wi-Fi setup and Bluetooth for wireless data connectivity. The BeagleBone Black and Raspberry Pi B+ devices only have Ethernet connectors, so the Creator CI20 has a leg up on them. But even so, the Raspberry Pi may still have the edge, as the Creator CI20 is just a product, whereas the Pi had so much backing and educational potential that it almost seemed like it was a movement.

We shall have to wait and see how the Creator CI20 will pan out, but for £50, it’s still a bargain in anyone’s book.

[Image via expertreviews]