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Raspberry Pi 4 just got this huge upgrade

RASPBERRY PI 4
(Image credit: RASPBERRY PI FOUNDATION)

The Raspberry Pi 4 now has more RAM than some laptops. As announced on the Raspberry Pi Foundation blog today (May 28), the new 8GB version of the nearly year-old model is shipping now and costs $75.

This new version is intended for the tinkerers who push their Raspberry Pi 4 to the limits. The announcement refers to using a Raspberry Pi to "compile and link large pieces of software or run heavy server workloads" as well as the folks who use their Raspberry Pi as a standalone computer, and feel frustrated by the number of browser tabs they can keep open without sluggish performance.

Other than the memory, this 8GB Raspberry Pi 4 is almost the same as the original, with the same ARM CPU and the same HDMI, USB and Ethernet ports. The 4GB Raspberry Pi 4 costs $55, while the 2GB model is $35.

Long rumored, thanks to references left in the Raspberry Pi 4's Beginner's Guide and compliance leaflet, this version arrives thanks to the folks at Micron, who provided parts for the new edition.

The Raspberry Pi 4 had to change a little for this new amount of memory, particularly in how the device is powered. Eagle-eyed builders will notice that the switch-mode power supply has been removed from the right-hand side of the board, and a new switcher now sits next to the USB-C power connector. This particular change was connected to why it took so long for the 8GB version to be released, due to supply chain issues caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

In the middle of today's news, the Raspberry Pi Foundation also announced it's renaming its operating system to Raspberry Pi OS. Speaking of which...

An 8GB Raspberry Pi 4 means 64-bit systems

The Raspberry Pi Foundation — aware that power users want a 64-bit system image to take advantage of all that RAM — released its own 64-bit Raspberry Pi OS image. It can be found here

Those wanting an option that isn't in beta have other choices, with Ubuntu and Gentoo both providing 64-bit versions of their Pi-friendly Linux distributions.