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Built for work, play, and everything in between!       \(•◡•)/
Built for work, play, and everything in between!   \(•◡•)/
Built for work, play, and everything in between!   \(•◡•)/
39,560 backers pledged $2,071,927 to help bring this project to life.

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CHIP - The World's First Nine Dollar Computer

$2,071,927

39,560

C.H.I.P. is a computer. It’s tiny and easy to use.

C.H.I.P. does computer things. Work in LibreOffice and save your documents to C.H.I.P.’s onboard storage. Surf the web and check your email over wifi. Play games with a bluetooth controller. With dozens of applications and tools preinstalled, C.H.I.P. is ready to do computer things the moment you power it on.

C.H.I.P. is a computer for students, teachers, grandparents, children, artists, makers, hackers, and inventors. Everyone really. C.H.I.P. is a great way to add a computer to your life and the perfect way to power your computer based projects.

C.H.I.P. has built in WiFi + Bluetooth. Connect to the internet and attach a keyboard and mouse WIRELESSLY!  

C.H.I.P. is designed to work with any screen. Old or new. Big or small.

Connect via C.H.I.P.’s built-in composite output or add a simple adapter for either VGA or HDMI.

Use C.H.I.P. with LibreOffice to edit spreadsheets, create word documents, or craft presentations. It's all there. 

Use the Chromium browser to surf the web. Check out websites, send emails, watch videos, and more. The internet awaits. 

C.H.I.P. comes pre-loaded with Scratch - an easy to learn language that teaches the basics of programing by making stories, games, and animations. 

Connect bluetooth controllers to C.H.I.P. and play thousands of games both retro and new. Been missing that amazing DOS game from your childhood? C.H.I.P. plays it! 

Connect a MIDI keyboard to C.H.I.P. and jam. Use it as a portable music player or as part of your favorite setup. Attach powered speakers and hear your tunes at full volume.  Rock on! 

C.H.I.P.'s open source operating system is easy to use and navigate. Its graphical display is just like what you're used to!

C.H.I.P. comes preinstalled with dozens of useful applications, tools and amazing games. Beyond those, C.H.I.P. can run THOUSANDS of free applications from the open source community. 

PocketC.H.I.P. makes C.H.I.P. portable!  PocketC.H.I.P. gives C.H.I.P. a 4.3” touchscreen, QWERTY keyboard, and 5-hour battery - in a case small enough to fit in your back pocket.

SPECS

  • 3,000 mAH battery 
  • 4.3" 470px x 272px screen w/ resistive touch 
  • Full Super-Clicky QWERTY keyboard 
  • Rugged Injection Molded Shell 
  • Fully open source 
  • GPIO breakouts 
  • C.H.I.P. is removable via hatch

USING PocketC.H.I.P. WITH C.H.I.P.

At 1Ghz and with 512MB of DDR3 RAM, C.H.I.P. is powerful enough to run real software, and handle the demands of a full GUI just as well as it handles attached hardware. Best of all, CHIP runs mainline Linux, which means it’s easier than ever to keep teaching it new tricks without inheriting a pile of kernel patches. 

Speaking of power, C.H.I.P. includes a fully integrated battery power circuit so that you can take your project outside right away. No external power circuit needed, just attach a 3.7v LiPo battery to C.H.I.P. and you’re ready to go mobile. 

Most important, though, is that C.H.I.P. is built to be flexible. Whether you’re building yourself a wall clock that counts down time to the next bus at your stop, or setting up a network of hundreds of solar-powered air quality sensors for use in disaster relief, you need the same basic tools to start from: a processor, a way to exchange data, and a way to power everything. With C.H.I.P., all the groundwork is laid, and the only question is what you’ll do next.

We built C.H.I.P. to make tiny powerful computers more accessible and easier to use. A huge part of making C.H.I.P. accessible is making sure that it can change to meet the needs of the community. That's why both C.H.I.P. and PocketC.H.I.P. are both TOTALLY OPEN SOURCE. This means all hardware design files schematic, PCB layout and bill of materials are free for you the community to download, modify and use.

Can’t wait to get started developing on C.H.I.P.? Join our team! By backing at the Kernel Hacker level, you’ll get one of the first 1000 pre-release "Alpha" C.H.I.P. prototypes, hot off the reflow line *THIS SEPTEMBER* PLUS you’ll be first in line for five C.H.I.P.s and one PocketC.H.I.P. as soon as they are ready. This is a special backer level meant only for hardcore linux devs who want to make meaningful contributions toward helping us build C.H.I.P.’s kernel software. If that sounds like the kind of challenge you’d like to sink your teeth into, back at the Kernel Hacker level, and join us on the march towards open source glory! ╭( ・ㅂ・)و

We've worked very closely with the amazing team at Allwinner Technology to insure that all the necessary documentation and source code for the System on Chip and Power Management Chips used in C.H.I.P. will be available for the community to use and learn from.

At Next Thing Co. we love to make things. The only thing we love more than making, is sharing what we make. We're so excited to see what you'll do with a $9 computer.

It takes more than the whole Next Thing Co. team to make C.H.I.P. possible. These are a few of the many amazing folks who have helped along the way: The entire Allwinner team (Ben, Wang Kang, Yinwei, Jet), Our endlessly supportive investors and mentors (Brownell, Cyril, Sean, Ryan, Brad and the FGAngels crew), all of our OTTO Kickstarter backers, the whole HAXLR8R squad - Duncan, Ben, Peter, Qiyu, Atomman and Sally, the wonderful folks at Bay Area Circuits, FATHOM, Kilovolt Coffee, and our families, who have supported us through long nights and endless trips to China.

Thanks!

Risks and challenges

The risks inherent in volume manufacturing are real, and we’ve taken every precaution to prepare for and actively address them. With the support of our manufacturing and distribution partners we are well equipped for the challenges ahead. We promise to keep our backers updated and informed about any issues that may arise ¡VIVA C.H.I.P!

Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

FAQ

  • QUANTITY. Our partners at Allwinner worked hard to help us find how to reduce costs, so that we could introduce C.H.I.P. to EVERYBODY. To sell C.H.I.P. for $9, we need to order tens of thousands of chips. By using common, available, and volume-produced processor, memory, and wifi chips, we are able to leverage the scales at which tablet manufacturers operate to get everyone the best price.

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  • We’ve held off on allowing multiple C.H.I.P. orders from our early production batches in order to make sure that everyone who wants to be an early adopter via Kickstarter is able. Offering Multiple-C.H.I.P. packs would mean that a single manufacturing run reaches fewer people. Don’t worry, we plan to make C.H.I.P. available in larger quantities later.

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  • Right now, we are entirely focused on the Kickstarter campaign. The only way to be an early adopter of C.H.I.P. is through Kickstarter. We plan to make C.H.I.P. available at a later date, but are committed to fulfilling our Kickstarter backers’ pledges first.

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  • UPDATE! Thanks to BackerKit, you will be able to add extras and accessories to your pledge reward after the campaign has closed either by using excess from your pledge, or by adding on with a credit card directly to BackerKit!

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  • We are working very hard to make C.H.I.P. possible, and every pledge on Kickstarter helps us prove that the world wants access to lower cost computing. By backing C.H.I.P.’s Kickstarter campaign, you add your voice to the conversation, and help show that the world wants a $9 computer for everything from education to home automation. Back C.H.I.P. today, and be a part of the early adopters that made it possible!

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  • After weeks of work and dozens of import forms, we have found shippers who are able to mix and match freight forwarders and distribution centers to best utilize lower-cost national shippers in the countries with the most C.H.I.P. backers! This means for the vast majority of international backers, shipping prices on C.H.I.P. have been reduced by up to 44%!

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  • 8 digital GPIOs, one PWM pin, SPI, TWI (I2C), UART, USB, CSI, Parallel LCD output, touchpanel input, stereo audio out, mono audio in, composite video out, and a whole bunch of power rails in and out.

    Most of these are set by the processor, but others are still subject to change as we finalize part selections. We’ll post more specific pinouts and electrical specs when we have finalized the design for “Alpha” modules in September.

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  • Yes. If you come work with us. :) Otherwise, September for Kernel Hacker backers, December for the first C.H.I.P. backers, and early next year for everyone else.

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  • Not yet, but the real beauty of open source hardware/software projects is that there is nothing stopping a motivated user from getting Ubuntu.. or a media player.. or ??? working on C.H.I.P.

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  • C.H.I.P. takes power in from an attached battery, runs on wired 5V DC input power, or can be powered via the same microUSB port that is used for battery charging and USB-OTG.

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  • C.H.I.P has an onboard X-Powers AXP209 PMIC chip which handles battery charging, pass-through-power, and DCDC conversions for the onboard power rails. It's a real workhorse!

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  • YES!!

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  • YES. Very open source, but we are still in the process of testing and refining the whole family of C.H.I.P. boards, and are not yet releasing our design files. We expect to be pushing files out publicly soon after the campaign.

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  • YES! PocketC.H.I.P. is a real portable computer. It has a 3000mAH 3.7V LiPo battery included, which should turn out to about 5 hours of operating time, depending on use.

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  • YES! 16 million beautiful colors on a 4.3” TFT backlit LCD screen. The exact screen may change slightly in sourcing, but we are committed to making PocketC.H.I.P. useful and fun right off the bat.

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  • YES! All of C.H.I.P.'s ports are exposed through the bottom of PocketC.H.I.P.'s back:
    USB, microUSB, and headphone/mic port. For even more hackery goodness, PocketC.H.I.P. has exposed GPIOs, power, and serial lines on its through-hole headers along the top edge of the screen too!

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  • Through C.H.I.P.'s microUSB port.

    PocketC.H.I.P. is literally powered by C.H.I.P. Both the battery charger and power supply for PocketC.H.I.P. are on C.H.I.P. So to charge the battery, plug power into C.H.I.P.'s microUSB port, the same way you would for a battery operated C.H.I.P. on its own.

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  • Any single-cell (3.7V) LiPo battery will work with C.H.I.P. You can go bigger or smaller than 3000mAH as needed for your project!

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  • The R8 is based on Allwinner's A13, so for tech references you can get a good sense of the R8's features from the A13 datasheet on linux-sunxi.org

    https://linux-sunxi.org/images/e/eb/A13_Datasheet.pdf

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  • Technically, yes, but the components are soldered on and not intended to be swapped out. If you really like reworking small BGA and fine pitch components, though, we won't stop you. :)

    If you want additional storage, you can attach a USB drive!

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  • YES! C.H.I.P. comes with Linux installed, and a selection of our favorite programs and games. Like any real computer, you can download more software and customize C.H.I.P.s applications and operating system to suit your needs!

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  • The easiest way to accomplish this is to power C.H.I.P. as usual via the microUSB port, and attach a USB keyboard with an accessory USB port on it, then connect your wired mouse to that port. Alternatively, a bluetooth keyboard or mouse can be used to free up the need for one or both USB device ports.

    For more advanced use cases, C.H.I.P. can be powered via its interconnects, leaving both the full size USB and microUSB ports available to attach devices to.

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  • In our initial prototypes, we are using a JST-2.0 PH 2-pin shrouded male connector to connect LiPo cells to C.H.I.P. In the current design there are also BATT pins available on the interconnect headers, which allow alternate battery connectors/placements when attaching C.H.I.P. to a custom PCBA. ** FINAL CONNECTOR SELECTION WILL HAPPEN AFTER MORE REVISIONS!!** Please do not buy a whole pile of JST-PH crimps and housings just yet.

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  • Current designs are for 3V3 digital logic on GPIOs, but part selection (and associated specs) may change slightly as designs are revised and prototypes are tested.

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  • No, but you can add one via the USB ports if that suits your project. There *is* however, built-in 802.11b/g/n wifi.

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  • C.H.I.P. is strictly B.Y.O.B. ;)

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  • No, but adding an RTC is a great (and easy) hardware hack, for the folks that need it. For most people, though, an RTC isn’t necessary since it is easy to get C.H.I.P. to pull time from a remote NTP server over wifi.

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  • We’re curious to hear what you think ;)

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  • C.H.I.P. is a /real/ computer, and can run software written in all kinds of programming languages, so long as there’s a compiler for them. Python, Java (via JDK8), Ruby, PHP, C++, JS, Assembly, BF.. even our favorite, ArnoldC, and lots lots more.

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  • Not at this time. Because there is no onboard digital audio support from our processor, C.H.I.P.’s current design only has analog audio output via the ⅛” headphone/composite jack. Adding a USB sound card is the easiest way to beef up your CHIP’s digital audio output options.

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  • Maybe! C.H.I.P. comes pre-loaded with some of our favorite open-source applications, and the ability to install hundreds more. What’s even more exciting, though, is that if any given program isn’t supported out of the box, the community can work together to make it happen. That’s what we <3 about Open Source Software.

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  • YES! The 1/8" mini (TRRS) jack can be used either with a video-only cable, audio only cable, headphones, headphones with mic, OR a combined Audio/Video composite cable. Pretty versatile little port, isn't it!?

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  • Yes! C.H.I.P. has a tiny power / reset button and a status LED on the board itself.

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  • PocketC.H.I.P. doesn’t have speakers built-in, but you can plug headphones or a portable amplifier into C.H.I.P.s ⅛” output jack. Since C.H.I.P. has onboard bluetooth, you can also pair a b also connect a BT speaker or headphones!

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  • Several reasons: Televisions are the most commonly available screen in the world and the vast majority of them have a composite input. Composite video can also be integrated without having to work in licensing fees to the cost of C.H.I.P. Composite is also a very low profile connector, allowing us to keep the footprint of the board small for people wanting to build C.H.I.P. into projects.

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  • No. But by integrating reliable storage onto the device, we’re able to both save you a “getting started” cost and allow Linux to come preinstalled on C.H.I.P. meaning it's ready to go when it arrives at your door. One of the big goals of this project is making C.H.I.P. easy to use, and this goes a long way towards that end. If you need additional storage, it’s easy to add an SD card reader over the USB ports on C.H.I.P.

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  • Absolutely! The schematics and layout for the boards, both of C.H.I.P. and C.H.I.P.’s adapters will be released as they are finalized for production. From that, you can build whatever sort of adapters or add-ons you want!

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  • You can connect a display through the 3.5mm (⅛”) TRRS composite video port on C.H.I.P. If you’d like to connect to a vga or hdmi monitor, we have adapters available for that! You can also connect any parallel LCD to the exposed display pins on C.H.I.P.’s headers.

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  • Yes! C.H.I.P. is designed to be modular, versatile, and mobile. Strip it down and C.H.I.P. remains functional on its own, or stack it up and teach C.H.I.P. new tricks!

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  • C.H.I.P. has exposed CSI pins on its headers for integrating a camera directly to the processor, or if drivers and sensor tuning sound like a bit much, you can always add a USB camera too.

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  • Yes! Not having a case for C.H.I.P. is one of the ways we are able to keep our costs down. As makers, we’re excited to introduce people to the physical components of computers and show them that electronics aren’t scary, they’re fun! We hope people are encouraged to begin tinkering themselves.

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  • PocketC.H.I.P. adds a molded case, battery, keyboard, and touchscreen display for C.H.I.P. That means that anything that C.H.I.P. can do, PocketC.H.I.P. can do portable!

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  • We’re focused on individual uses of C.H.I.P. but what you’re talking about is called clustering, and may be possible -- A good place to start, if you’re interested in clustering, is reading up on Debian-Beowulf. https://www.debian.org/ports/beowulf/

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  • Due to a lack of support for Silverlight (the back-end software that allows Netflix to be streamed) in Linux, it is unlikely that Netflix will work on C.H.I.P. using entirely open-source software unless someone comes up with an alternate back-end. That said, some very astute backers have reported that Netflix should be possible by installing the Google Chrome browser, which allows Netflix streaming via HTML5.

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  • C.H.I.P. is designed to work at 720p resolution, though the Mali 400 GPU is technically capable of up to 1080p outputs.

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  • No. C.H.I.P. will come preinstalled with a customized Linux OS and with an office suite, a series of tools and handful of games that we like. Just power on, and get started.

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  • C.H.I.P. pledge rewards at the $9, $19, and $150 levels come with a ⅛” mini TRRS to RCA composite video output cable, which lets you hook C.H.I.P. up to most televisions. Any other cable, you’ll need to provide yourself.

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  • C.H.I.P. can be powered via a standard (>500mA) microUSB phone charger and cable. Many old and existing phone charging cables will work, or most 5V USB power “wall wart” adapters.

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  • We’re doing our best, but please be patient: there are 30,000 of you (!!!) in every imaginable timezone and only 9 of us! We are reading every comment and message and updating our FAQs with the most common questions so they do everyone good. Please take a minute to read through the FAQs, chances are pretty good your question has already been covered. (/◔ ◡ ◔)/

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  • After years of searching, we found a South Carolina built Bajaj 20 miles from the office. Yes it's street legal.

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  • YES! Thanks to BackerKit, all C.H.I.P. Kickstarter backers will be able to add extras and accessories (and even some special goodies) to their pledge reward even after the campaign has closed!

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Support this project

  1. Reward no longer available

    Pledge $9 or more About $9

    C.H.I.P.

    Get learning and making on your very own $9 computer.

    Includes one C.H.I.P. and a composite cable for maximum bare-bones enjoyment.

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    Pledge $9 or more About $9

    C.H.I.P.

    Get learning and making on your very own $9 computer.

    Includes one C.H.I.P. and a composite cable for maximum bare-bones enjoyment.
    – SHIPPING IN JANUARY –

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    C.H.I.P.

    Get learning and making on your very own $9 computer.

    Includes one C.H.I.P. and a composite cable for maximum bare-bones enjoyment.

    – SHIPPING IN FEBRUARY –

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    C.H.I.P. with REDUCED INTERNATIONAL SHIPPING to UK, EU, CAN, AUS, and JPN.

    Get learning and making on your very own $9 computer.
    – SHIPPING IN MARCH –

    Includes one C.H.I.P. and a composite cable for maximum bare-bones enjoyment.

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    Pledge $19 or more About $19

    C.H.I.P. + Battery

    One C.H.I.P. plus one 3000mAh 3.7V LiPo battery pack, so you can put C.H.I.P. into portable projects!

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    C.H.I.P. + VGA Adapter

    Connect C.H.I.P. to any VGA monitor.

    One C.H.I.P. plus one VGA adapter to let you plug your C.H.I.P. into most of the computer monitors on earth..

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    C.H.I.P. + HDMI Adapter

    Connect C.H.I.P. to any HDMI monitor.

    One C.H.I.P. plus one HDMI adapter, so your C.H.I.P can work with most recent displays and TVs.

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    PocketC.H.I.P. (includes one C.H.I.P.)

    Makes C.H.I.P. portable!
    Fits a touchscreen, keyboard, and battery conveniently in your back pocket.

    Includes 1x PocketC.H.I.P. and 1x C.H.I.P.

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    PocketC.H.I.P. (includes one C.H.I.P.) + HDMI Adapter

    Makes C.H.I.P. portable!
    Fits a touchscreen, keyboard, and battery conveniently in your back pocket. Or take C.H.I.P. out and connect C.H.I.P. to most recent displays and TVs.

    Includes one PocketC.H.I.P., one C.H.I.P., and one HDMI Adapter.

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    All of the things!

    PocketC.H.I.P. (includes one C.H.I.P.) + additional C.H.I.P. + VGA Adapter + HDMI Adapter + Battery

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    All of the things! - SPLIT SHIPMENT
    1x C.H.I.P. (ships in December, 2015)

    PocketC.H.I.P. (includes one C.H.I.P.) + VGA Adapter + HDMI Adapter + Battery (ships in May, 2016)

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    Pledge $98 or more About $98

    2x PocketC.H.I.P.

    Everything is better with a friend. Pick up two PocketC.H.I.P.s and share the joy of FriendC.H.I.P!

    Includes 2x PocketC.H.I.P. and 2x C.H.I.P.

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    KERNEL HACKERS ONLY:
    1x C.H.I.P. pre-release “alpha” model,
    Get the earliest access and help us develop C.H.I.P.’s software!
    ~plus~
    5x C.H.I.P.
    1x PocketC.H.I.P.
    and get your C.H.I.P.s and PocketC.H.I.P. from the earliest shipments of release models as soon as they are available.

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    Pledge $489 or more About $489

    10x PocketC.H.I.P.

    Outfit a classroom, workshop, or art project for less than the cost of a used laptop.

    Includes 10 PocketC.H.I.P.s and 10 C.H.I.P.s

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Funding period

- (30 days)