The Pine64 single-board hobbyist project has introduced a low-cost Linux laptop. The new Pinebook Pro inherited from the previous 2017 Pinebook, but it also differs from its predecessor with a more powerful filling for its value category. Pinebook Pro also has built-in additional privacy in the form of online blocking of some systems.
Protection against unauthorized access
The manufacturer announced the imminent start of deliveries of its Linux-novelty based on an economical chipset. Pine64 has made a name for itself in the IT world when it introduced the $ 15 Pine A64 mini single board PC in 2016, competing with the equally popular compact Raspberry Pi.
The Pinebook Pro is a low-cost laptop that starts at $ 200 and comes with settings to provide extra protection from prying eyes. When a certain key combination is activated, the device blocks a number of components, which include the AC adapter, camera and microphone. This function is built-in at the system level, therefore it does not depend on the operating OS. The memory of the laptop records the state of, for example, the microphone, even after the laptop has been turned off or a restart has been initiated.
The Pinebook Pro is based on the Rockchip RK3399 six-core chipset, complemented by an ARM Mali-T860MP4 GPU. The screen is equipped with a 14-inch IPS-matrix with Full HD support. The pre-installed system is the Debian OS, but at the same time, the inexpensive laptop is compatible with other solutions based on Linux, and also supports Chromium OS and Android 9.
In the arsenal of Pinebook Pro there is 4 GB of "RAM", there is an integrated module of 64 or 128 GB, and to expand the internal memory, the laptop is equipped with a slot for a microSD card. If desired, the device can be additionally equipped with a solid-state drive by purchasing a special connector.
Pinebook Pro supports Wi-Fi 802.11ac and Bluetooth 5.0 standards, has a built-in stereo system, a full keyboard and touchpad. The webcam on the front surface has a 2 MP matrix. In addition, the case is equipped with connectors for USB 2.0, USB 3.0 Type-A and more modern USB Type-C, there is a 3.5 mm audio input. The device is powered by a 10,000 mAh battery.
The new Pinebook Pro, which complements the 2019 low-cost laptops, is the "bug fix" by the Pine64 team. This is not the first time the company has released a device of this class of budget laptops, and the Pinebook Pro is a direct successor to the Pinebook model from two years ago. Appeared on the shelves in the spring of 2017, the Pinebook, depending on the configuration, was priced in the $ 89- $ 99 range. It was based on the Allwinner 4-core ARM chip. At one time, the first portable Pinebook received negative critical reviews. Among the remarks towards the laptop were called the low quality of the software and the assembly of the device itself, as well as insufficient technical support of the laptop by the developers.
The Topic of Article: Budget Linux laptop with added privacy protection released.