Millionth Raspberry Pi rolls off British production line
The millionth Raspberry Pi has been made in Britain, just 18 months after the low-cost computer was launched.
The Raspberry Pi, which was launched last year, was originally manufactured in China, to help keep costs of the £25 computer down. Production was later shifted to Sony’s factory in South Wales, where a million of the units have now been manufactured.
Raspberry Pi founder, Eben Upton, told the BBC that the device had confounded the doubters. “I remember being told this was an unsaleable product,” said Upton. “Our ambitions were maybe to have sold, by this point, a couple of hundred thousand Raspberry Pis.”
“But we’ve already surpassed the sales of the BBC Micro – my childhood computer. There was a latent need for something like this.”
Although the Raspberry Pi has seen widespread adoption in schools, Upton hopes that more of the devices will end up in the hands of children, fulfilling the project’s original goal of introducing kids to programming. “It still really is early days,” he said. “I reckon maybe 75 or 80% of Pis are going into the hands of adult hobbyists. We are now at the point when we’ve got 200,000 of them in the hands of kids.”
The Raspberry Pi has been an extraordinary British success story in a market dominated by US and Asian firms. Not only was the ARM processor that the device is built on designed in Cambridge, but now the Raspberry Pi is manufactured entirely in Britain.
“It’s shown that we can do first-class engineering in the UK, and that we can do low-cost manufacturing in the UK too,” said Upton.