ARM-based Rikomagic MK902 LE runs Linux
The UK-based Clousto recently began selling the Rikomagic MK902 LE, a small set-top box powered by an ARM-based Rockchip quad-core processor (Cortex-A9) paired with 2GB of RAM and up to 16GB of storage.
Additional specs include 8GB or 16GB of storage, a microSD card slot, HDMI output, four full-sized USB ports, 802.11n WiFi, 10/100 Ethernet and a microSD card slot.
The MK902 - which ships with the popular Ubuntu flavor of Linux (PicUntu) - can be snapped up for approximately $159.
As Liliputing's Brad Linder notes, PicUntu 4.5, a custom version of Ubuntu 13.04, is designed to run on devices with Rockchip processors.
"You can install it on a number of TV boxes, TV sticks, or tablets yourself — but part of the appeal of buying an LE edition device is that you don’t need to install the software yourself," Linder explained.
"In my experience, basic Ubuntu apps including web browsers and even graphics or audio editing apps work pretty well on devices with RK3188 chips."
However, there is currently no support for hardware-accelerated graphics or video which makes gaming and HD video playback somewhat difficult. As such, readers may also want to consider the Android version of the Mk902 which can be purchased for approximately $105 and up.