The Intel Compute Stick is a small USB flash drive-sized PC-on-a-Stick device that can be plugged into an HDMI-compatible TV or monitor to provide a complete personal computing (PC) experience.
Intel announced its Compute Stick in March 2015, with the initial release powered by a quad-core Intel Atom system-on-a-chip (SoC) processor. The Compute Stick is available in a $149 version running Microsoft Windows 8.1 or a $109 version running Ubuntu 14.04 LTS.
Both Intel Compute Stick versions include Wi-Fi and Bluetooth support, a USB port, and a micro SD card slot for additional storage beyond the 8 GB of on-board storage in the Linux version and 32 GB of on-board storage in the Windows-based Intel Compute Stick.
Uses for the Intel Compute Stick and Its Competition
As with most PC-on-a-Stick devices, the Intel Compute Stick doesn’t offer the full functionality of a traditional desktop or laptop computer, but rather is marketed for its portability, low price tag and use in light productivity work as well as Web browsing, social networking, video chatting and media streaming.
The Intel Compute Stick competes in the PC-on-a-Stick market with numerous hardware vendors, including offerings from Amazon (Fire Stick), Google (Chromecast), Lenovo (Ideacentre Stick) and Archos.
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