Devices like Google’s Chromecast and Amazon’s Fire TVbrought instant media streaming to the living room, and now Intel is looking to go one further with a stick that transforms any HDMI-equipped TV into a fully-fledged PC.
Unveiled at CES 2015, Intel’s Compute Stick is a four-inch device that’s powered by a quad-core Intel Atom Bay Trail Z3735F CPU and runs Windows 8.1 or Linux. Features include built-in Wi-Fi and a microSD slot to boost storage.
The Windows version comes with 2GB of RAM and 32GB of storage for $149 (around £98/AUS$184), while the Linux option offers 1GB of RAM and 8GB of storage for $89 (around £57/AUS$110).
Stick with it
Like the Chromecast, the Compute Stick uses a micro-USB port for power, meaning it may be possible to power it using one of your TV’s spare USB ports rather than a mains socket.
In addition to web surfing and other common activities, Intel reckons the Compute Stick’s energy efficient nature makes it suitable for on-the-move developers or business users who require remote IT support in the field.
While not the cheapest way of carrying a full Windows 8.1 PC in your pocket (a Linx 7 Windows 8.1 tablet with HDMI-out can be had for £79), the Intel Compute stick will no doubt appeal to those looking for the most portable way to lug around Windows 8.1 or Linux when it lands in March. >more