In June 2019 the Raspberry Pi foundation surprised everyone by releasing it latest version of the Raspberry Pi 4.

This new version of our favorite mini computer is a complete overhaul of the platform, while keeping the well known form factor. In this post we’ll run through the most important changes.

Hardware Improvements

The new Raspberry Pi 4 has a bunch of hardware improvements, most importantly:

  • New more powerful CPU – its now using the Broadcom BCM2711, Quad core Cortex-A72 (ARM v8) 64-bit SoC @ 1.5GHz
  • More memory options – you can now buy 1GB, 2GB or 4 GB versions
  • 2 Micro HDMI ports supporting 4K monitors
  • 2 USB3 ports for more bandwidth
  • Gigabit Ethernet with PoE support
  • 802.11ac WiFi support
  • Bluetooth 5.0 and BLE support – great for IoT projects
  • Now uses USB-C for power supply allowing it to draw more power

Overall this represents a substantial improvement in performance and peripherals compared to the old Raspberry Pi 3 model. The board will keep the well known form factor, but obviously some ports will have new locations as the type has changed or new ports have been added.

Raspberry Pi 4 board – note the location for the power supply and 2 HDMI outputs

Software Improvements

With the new version of the hardware platform the Raspberry Pi foundation also released a new version of their operating system Raspbian.

The new version called Raspbian Buster is based on the latest version of Debian. It includes a number of improvements:

  • Numerous technical improvements
  • Updated applications
  • Modernized user interface

Raspbian Buster is required when using the new Raspberry Pi 4 hardware, and is also backwards compatible with older versions of the Raspberry Pi platform.