Raspberry Pi 2 expected in 2017, Foundation focussed on software for now

During a podcast interview with RasPi.Today, Raspberry Pi Foundation founder Eben Upton revealed that they plan to release a higher performance Raspberry Pi in 2017.

“There will come a time where we want to do a higher performance Raspberry Pi, but I think we’re still some distance away from that yet,” says Upton. “I think that’s some way down our list of things to do. We’ve talked about 2017 as a time that we could do a higher performance Pi, and I think that’s probably still about the right time.”

In the mean time Eben Upton and the team at the Raspberry Pi Foundation will be focussing on the software side of the Raspberry Pi, as well as the forthcoming Raspberry Pi touchscreen display. “There’s plenty of life in Raspberry Pi 1 and there’s still plenty of low-hanging fruit on the software side. We’re still finding system level components that we can optimise that deliver really meaningful amounts of performance uplift for the user,” Upton explained.

“One things that’s exciting is that we’re expecting (in some point in the next year) to be able to start shipping a much more open and less ‘blob-centric’ software stack for the Raspberry Pi… It will improve the chance of doing things like 3D graphics on the Raspberry Pi desktop. It will affect our gradual migration towards a Wayland desktop environment, which we’ve already done a lot of work on.”

Other exciting developments include the Web browser, a fully-featured HTML5 browser capable of playing HD YouTube videos among other things. It’s currently in beta and the browser is being actively developed and new versions are being released weekly.

“We’d like to get [the Web browser] into the stock Raspbian install in the next two or three months,” continued Upton. “…you play with it and see that there’s not a big difference anymore between the Pi and a usual desktop computer. It can do all the various HTML5 multimedia things and – even on pretty JavaScript heavy websites – it feels pretty punchy. I’m really impressed with how it has come out. It’s going to be a big deal for users.”

The Raspberry Pi Foundation has full instructions on how to test the Web browser beta linked from their homepage.

Just make sure you’re using a spare SD card for testing purposes – they can’t guarantee it wont crash your system.

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