The Raspberry Pi 3 is the current version of the circuit board computer that has changed the way we see computers and code. From its humble beginnings in 2012, the Raspberry Pi is now a fully featured minicomputer with Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and decent specifications, especially considering its pocket money price.

What is the Raspberry Pi?

The Raspberry Pi is a single circuit board computer that is designed to be the basis to learn code, to build home projects and to generally experiment with. It uses an onboard processor, graphics and RAM and is pretty much a self-contained computer that costs only $35 or so.

Raspberry Pi has always been about potential and experimentation rather than the device itself, a bit like Lego. The product just provides the medium. The fun and the achievement comes from what you do with that medium. Check out these ten examples of what people have done with the Raspberry Pi.

Raspberry Pi 3

The Raspberry Pi 3 is an update to last year’s Raspberry Pi 2. While it looks identical in almost every way, there have been some significant upgrades that makes it worth the investment. The benefit of looking exactly the same is that it will fit into any case or setup you may already have created with the previous model.

The Raspberry Pi 3 uses a Broadcom BCM2837 64-bit system-on-chip with four ARM Cortex-A53 CPU cores running at 1.2GHz. It also uses 1GB of LPDDR2 RAM and has an Ethernet port, Bluetooth, microSD storage, an HDMI port, audio jack, 4 USB 2 ports and Camera and Display Serial Interfaces.

The system on chip is quite an upgrade, offering a lot more power and potential. The doubling of the USB was a great move in the Raspberry Pi 2 and the 3 builds on that by adding Bluetooth.

If you use the Raspbian Jessie build, everything works out of the box too, even Wi-Fi which means setting up and getting to work with the Raspberry Pi 3 is as simple as ever. If you need extra help getting to grips with how everything works, the updated Help section of the Raspberry Pi website makes it simple to get started. This means the entire experience has been upgraded, not just the hardware.

First impressions of the Raspberry Pi 3

Having played with the Raspberry Pi 3 for a couple of days, I think this version is the best yet. Not only is it more powerful and usable than before, it also offers more potential. Yes you can come up with some strange ways of using it, but now you can also use it as a mini PC, media server or more. The increase processing power means the main limiting factor is your imagination and that isn’t something I would say very often!