Having a tough time figuring out which Android TV stick or tablet to pick up if what you really want to do is run Linux on it? Me too.
Fortunately CNX-Software reports Ian Morrison decided to test more than half a dozen different ARM-powered devices running Ubuntu 12.04 or Ubuntu 12.10 and he’s shared the results. Unfortunately they’re not entirely conclusive.
That’s partly because some of the devices were running Ubuntu 12.04 while others ran Ubuntu 12.10. And some had Ubuntu installed natively while others were running it in chroot.
More importantly, each different processor has different features. So while an ARM Cortex-A9 CPU is generally faster than a Cortex-A8 chip, a device with a Freescale i.MX6 quad-core ARM Cortex-A9 processor doesn’t always outperform one with a Rockchip RK3066 dual-core ARM Cortex-A9 chip.
That said, Morrison ran a series of benchmarks from the Phoronix Test Suite on the following devices, generally ranked in order of performance from lowest to highest:
- MK802 Plus TV stick with Allwinner A10 ARM Cortex-A8 processor
- MK803 TV stick with Amlogic AM8726-M3 ARM Cortex-A9 processor
- Zealz GK802 TV stick with Freescale i.MX6 ARM Cortex-A9 quad-core processor
- UG802 TV stick with Rockchip RK3066 ARM Cortex-A9 dual core processor
- PQ Labs iStick A200 TV stick with Rockchip RK3066
- Asus Eee Pad Transformer TF101 tablet with NVIDIA Tegra 2 ARM Cortex-A9 dual core processor
- Hardkernel ODroid-U2 dev board with Samsung Exynos 4412 ARM Cortex-A9 quad-core processor
- Samsung Chromebook with Samsung Exynos 5250 ARM Cortex-A15 dual-core CPU
All told, none of these devices will run Ubuntu as well as a machine with the latest AMD or Intel processors. But the scores for the Samsung Chromebook are pretty decent for a $249 device.