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Arduino compete with Raspberry Pico in the future

Personal opinion: the pico was a hype, at least partially. I see local retails giving it away at half the original, hyped price, and in the meanwhile I see a general shortage of arduino nano clones, the good old 328P.

People, including me, have limited time and brain capacity. So if I think in the spectrum with landmarks ArduinoNano - (mega) - ESP32 - RaspberryPi4, then the pico, along with other contenders such as STM32, or why not, the multitude of Renesas muscle like the S5D9 or the S7G2 series I’ve worked with (which are a marvel from many aspects, and suck from a few other), doesn’t really find its place yet. It came too late I guess.

I bought four pico boards, to have them in my drawer should a rainy day, or yet another govid, force me to stay home and count LEDs… so far, no project for them.


Now, the Arduino guys announced and prepped a few of the Arduino Nano RP2040, which brings onboard wifi, kinda like the Raspberry original RP2040, but on steroids. And full arduino support. I’m really curious about those boards, and hunting locally, maybe soon I’ll find one.

These said, the IDE. I’ve been professionally exposed to Microchip’s and Renesas’s interpretation of how a good IDE looks and works. So so, but professional. Tinkering with STM32s felt amateurish, almost like java, endless configs across multiple applications… to get a blinky.

Arduino did something well: the hammer, nail and piece of wood approach. When that is what I need, and most of the time that is all I need, moving a filterwheel, wifi-ing some sensor readings, relaying a serial buffer to the net… they do it well, with no ceremony, and bare metal C, the way I like it.

If I need something professional, with a professional budget, and professional musclepower, then there are the big boys awaiting with reels of mcus to take my money, and give something serious in return.

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