One of the reasons Google Android seems to be everywhere these days is because the operating system is free to use. Of course, the smartphone, tablet, or smartbook hardware that you need to run the operating system isn’t exactly free. But it can be pretty close. A company called AllGo is showing off a platform that lets you build an Android powered device for just about $15.

What that $15 gets you is a low power 450MHz Freescale i.MX233 processor and chipset and WiFi module. It doesn’t include a screen, or as far as I can tell any kind of casing. It also doesn’t include distribution costs or retail markup, so I don’t think you’ll be able to walk into a store and buy a $15 Android tablet anytime soon. But it’s not unreasonable to expect this sort of system to result in sub-$100 tablets. Slow tablets, with sluggish graphics… but the price is right.

You can check out a hands-on video with a demo tablet courtesy of ARMdevices.net.

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3 replies on “AllGo figures out how to build a $15 (screenless) Android device”

  1. This has some awesome possibilities I think. With prices this low, it becomes so much easier to make embedded products.

    With the right software, you could easily make a wireless audio source (like Apple’s airport express, except cheap).

    Make any printer internet enabled – combine this with Google’s Cloud Print or a similar service.

    Small, simple media server – you could probably put something this size into the case of an external hard drive and have a Linux powered NAS!

    I’m excited about the future.

    1. The really interesting implications of this are for people in the less aflluent parts of the world (so called 3rd world countries) where low cost means accessibility. Developments like this mean little for us pampered white folk, but for people with limited incomes this kind of stuff is really revolutionary.

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