Mini PC manufacturer Udoo is promoting the launch of a Kickstarter campaign, Udoo Key, a microcontroller board featuring both an RP2040 – the Raspberry Pi Pico – and an ESP32 all in one odd shaped package.
The Udoo Key is a curiously proportioned T-shaped board, sees the ESP32, powered by a dual-core Xtensa 32-bit LX6, 16MB flash memory and 8MB PSRAM, placed at the top of the board, and a custom RP2040 powered board at the base. The RP2040 is the same dual ARM Cortex-M0 chip as used on the Raspberry Pi Pico and many other RP2040 powered board, but Udoo Key has 8MB of QSPI flash, four times the amount of the Raspberry Pi Pico.
Targeting a price of $20 (or $4 if you sign up for the early-bird discount) the cost is greater than buying individual ESP32 and Raspberry Pi Picos, but you’re paying for convenience here. Both halves of the board are fully programmable, and 100% compatible with Pico accessories (which suggests that the Pico side of the board shares the same pinout as the Pico) and Olimex UEXT modules for the ESP32. It supports all the usual programming environments, such as MicroPython, TensorFlow Lite and C/C++, while also natively supporting the Clea AI over IoT platform.
According to the product page, the ESP32 and RP2040 can be used independently or together. The true power of this board lies in the pair being used together. How they will communicate, we do not know. It could be in a similar manner to Pimoroni’s Pico Wireless, which uses SPI to communicate with ESP32 providing Wi-Fi to the Pico.
We don’t know yet when the crowdfunding drive will start, but you can sign up to be notified on the Udoo site. Remember that crowdfunding a project is not a guarantee of receiving a finished product. Backing a crowdfunded project is akin to an investment, you believe in the project and want it to succeed. You are not purchasing a retail product.