A new version of the Raspberry Pi 4 has been released with 8Gb of memory. Raspbian has had a name change to Pi OS and a 64bit version is in development to use the power of the new Pi4 8gb.
The Raspberry Pi 4 was originally release with options for 1gb, 2gb or 4gb of memory. This means that you can buy a PI 4 based on your planned usage. Due to a reduction in Memory cost the 1gb option was soon dropped and the price of the 2gb version was reduced from £45 to £34.
The Raspberry Pi Foundation have announced that an 8gb version has been released. This seems to have always been in their plan but there was no 8gb memory available at the time of for release for the Pi4. Now suitable 8gb memory chips have been developed and the update Pi has been released at around £74. This brings the price range for the Pi4's to
- Raspberry Pi 4 - 2gb for £34
- Raspberry Pi 4 - 4gb for £54
- Raspberry Pi 4 - 8gb for £74
The Pi 4 is a versatile device and can be used as a desktop computer so the extra memory probably won't be useful to educators and most hobbyists but for developers of high demanding applications this will be an interesting update and allows more activities to move from PC's and Laptops to Raspberry Pi's amd take advange of it's lower power requirments.
I have been using a Pi 4 along side a laptop while working from home and find it useful to have a second device for some online contents and programming.
Raspbian is now the Raspberry Pi OS
Raspbian has been the main Operating System for the Raspberry Pi since it was released in 2012. This has had many developments along the way but is a 32bit operating system. The Pi4, with 4gb and 8gb options causing an issue in the fact 32bit operating systems can only access around 3gb of memory at a time. The Pi 4 is capable of having 16gb of memory so a 64bit operating system would take advantage of the extra memory.
Until now a 64bit OS on the Pi has been available through the arm version of Ubuntu but the foundation has announced a 64bit version of Raspbian is in development and is available from this page https://www.raspberrypi.org/forums/viewtopic.php?f=117&t=275370
Along with this new version they have announced that the operating system's name will be changed from Raspbian to Raspberry Pi OS. The Raspbian OS is a seperate project to the Raspberry Pi Foundation but they work together with a variant that the Raspberry Pi foundation release with all the extra educational software included. As there is no plans for a 64 bit version of Raspbian the foundation version is being renamed so it is clearer between which is the foundations officiall maintained OS and the Raspbian project. Also for beginners they will see several operatings systems available for the Raspberry Pi, this change also makes it clearer which one is the official Raspberry Pi Foundation maintained operating system.