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Sharks Cove by Microsoft


Sharks Cove is Microsoft’s attempt to enter into the very competitive market of hardware for developers/students/makers/hackers. As you already know Raspberry Pi and Arduino are the major players. The main reason is the very low buying price and the not so steep learning curve. So what is Sharks Cove and where does it fits? Microsoft states:

The Intel Sharks Cove board supports development of devices and drivers that use a variety of interfaces, including GPIO, I2C, I2S, UART, SDIO, USB, and MIPI for Display and Camera. The primary target usage of the Sharks Cove board is for development of subsystems for Intel® ATOM™ based Tablets and Mobile devices, but this development board can be used for any Windows or Android based system which uses the ATOM™ processor.

So by reading only this paragraph you understand that its not for the masses. Kind of disappointing. One cool thing though is that you can run Windows 8.1 but I am not sure if that small Atom can handle heavy tasks. Below you can see the specs:

    • Intel ® ATOM™ Processor Z3735G , 2M Cache, 4 Core, 1.33GHz up
      to 1.88GHz
    • Intel ® HD Graphics
    • 1GB 1×32 DDR3L-RS-1333
    • 16GB EMMC Storage
    • uSD Card expandability
    • HDMI full size connector
    • MIPI Display Connector
    • Qty. 12 (5X2) Shrouded Pin Header connectors:
    • Qty. 1 (2X10) Header for Sensors
    • Qty. 2 60 pin MIPI Connector for Display and Camera
    • Qty. 5 (2×2) Pin Headers for Power
    • 1 USB 2.0 type A Connector for expandability to hub for KB/Mouse,
    • 1 micro USB type A/B for debug
    • Audio Codec Realtek ALC5640
    • Stereo headphone Jack 3.5mm
    • Headers for Speaker output and Onboard Digital Mic
    • Ethernet or WiFi through USB
Additional Features
    • Intel® UEFI BIOS
    • Power, Volume Up, Volume Down, Home screen and Rotation Lock
    • 1 micro USB type A/B for Power
    • SPI debug programming header
Form Factor
  • 4 inch X 6 inch type 3 board with 4 stand-offs

But the worst part in my opinion is the price  tag. 299$ sounds a lot for my thin wallet. I’ll keep an eye on it but I see this product having the success of windows vista. You can preorder one here.



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