Raspberry Pi used to create £90 smartphone

Device created as "proof of concept" using off-the-shelf components comes with a touchscreen and can make calls - but not much more than that

The Raspberry Pi continues to prove an infinitely adaptable piece of kit, with a video from Linux engineer David Hunt showing how the credit card-sized computer can be used to create a £90 smartphone.

The PiPhone (what else would you call it) was created using various off-the-shelf parts including a 320 x 420 touchscreen and SIM9000 module that provides the actual cellular capacity.

“As you can see from the cost of the components, you’d be FAR better off going into your local phone store and picking up a normal smartphone," writes Hunt in a breakdown on his website.

"But hey, where’s the fun in that. I got a great kick out of the first phone call I made with this thing."

Hunt says that the handset is “more of a proof of concept” than anything else, but the device not only proves the prowess of the Pi but also the sheer abundance of high quality tech components available to pretty much anyone in the 21st century.

 

The PiPhone may look adorably clunky (indeed, the colourful components give it the feel of a toddler’s plastic mobile) but it’s amazing to think that just twenty years ago this device would have been at the cutting edge of the mobile market.

Other notable uses by Raspberry Pi enthusiasts have included sending a teddy bear into the stratosphere to recreate Felix Baumgartner's record-breaking skydive, and last year the simple computer was lauded by the Nominet Trust for "inspiring social change".

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