The Raspberry Pi Foundation has announced the immediate availability of the Raspberry Pi 8GB version of its new Raspberry Pi 4 Boards. Almost a year back when the Raspberry Pi 4 was introduced, the official website mentioned an 8GB version initially, but later removed it citing it as a typo for 4GB. But as Eben Upton, CEO of Raspberry Pi Foundation says it became the “The Typo that shook the world”. Since then there were expectations for an 8GB version and it turns out today, the Pi fans could order their 8GB Raspberry Pi 4 for 75$ through the official distributors who are currently taking back-orders for this new 8GB Pi.
When Pi 4 was launched the board already had the BCM2711 chip which can address up to 16GB of LPDDR4 SDRAM. Eben writes that “the real barrier to our offering a larger-memory variant was the lack of an 8GB LPDDR4 package”. So, back in 2019, the foundation did get an 8GB LPDDR4 and had to wait until now to release its new 8GB version.
With this new 8GB version, the Pi Foundation has also released a beta version of a new 64-bit OS. The existing 32-bit OS will also continue to work on 8GB versions, but it only has a 32-bit LPAE kernel and a 32-bit userland and hence cannot allow a single process to use more than 4GB of RAM. If you are running multiple processes (like opening multiple tabs on chromium), then the complete 8GB RAM can be utilized. Simply, put the new Pi can support power users with its 8GB RAM, but with its 64-bit OS still under development (many apps on Pi still run with 32-bit), it might take some time for the Pi community to explore the full benefits. Nevertheless, the 64-bit OS and 8GB Pi have sparked interest among many Pi Enthusiasts.