Arduino vs Raspberry Pi | As we have already seen in another post about embedded systems engineering fundamentals, this type of product can be programmed directly in the assembly language of the microcontroller or microprocessor or by using other languages such as C or C ++ through specific compilers.
Embedded systems are generally designed for use in tasks that involve real-time computing, but other cases such as Arduino and Raspberry Pi also stand out, whose purpose is more oriented to the design and development of applications and prototypes with embedded systems from graphic environments.
- 1 Arduino vs Raspberry Pi | How to choose?
- 2 What is Arduino? How does it work?
- 3 Advantages of using Arduino
- 4 Disadvantages of Arduino
- 5 What is Raspberry Pi? How does it work?
- 6 Benefits of using Raspberry Pi
- 7 Cons of Raspberry Pi
- 8 Arduino vs Raspberry Pi | We’ll help you choose
- 9 Embedded software developers
Arduino vs Raspberry Pi | How to choose?
With all that being said, surely you are wondering: which is the best option? When should I use Arduino? When Raspberry Pi? …Arduino vs Raspberry Pi?
Don’t worry. We help you choose.
What is Arduino? How does it work?
Arduino is a hardware and software company mostly dedicated to designing hardware development. Their products are useful and suitable for both professionals and students.
A microcontroller development board is a board that contains the microcontroller to get programmed with various elements that facilitate testing and loading the code into the device. Commonly, they are of limited resources, usually with an amount of memory that allows for relatively small programs and processors with a not very high frequency.
Although Arduino products are not usually used directly in industry solutions, they are popular as test scenarios and above all, they are an effective alternative for any personal project, regardless of its complexity.
Advantages of using Arduino
When it comes to programming electronic chips, each one has a different way of receiving the code. Some have a USB input, some receive the executable by UART, others get programmed using AT commands, others need an intermediate device called a programmer (which usually is not cheap), and a long list of etceteras. In addition to being messy and complicated for a newcomer, it is easy for the process to fail if each step doesn’t get done correctly.
Arduino simplified this process by making programming its boards as simple as possible. Virtually all of your products got programmed using a single cable, such as micro USB or USB Type B. Additionally, your products are automatically detected in the Arduino IDE (Integrated Development Environment), which is a program that writes the code and saves it into the device. It’s an IDE with a clear purpose: to make microcontroller programming and engraving simple and ideal for beginners. In addition, any manufacturer can adhere to some compatibility requirements to include their product in the Arduino environment, and thanks to this today there are hundreds of devices that can be programmed using this IDE. It is important to note that both the IDE and the schematics of the Arduino products are open source, something which is in line with the intention of learning they seek to promote.
Another advantage is its reliability. When you order a board from Arduino because you have seen it on the website and its components and characteristics have interested you, you know that you will get exactly the product you have ordered, with the specific components, the correct schematic, and the documentation up to date. The reason why it is worth highlighting something that in other areas is taken for granted (it is assumed that you will always get the product you ask for, right?) Is that when we buy microcontrollers or development boards for hobbies or personal projects, normally we tend to be more concerned about the performance of the device as well as its price, so you end up asking manufacturers that are cheaper, and it is common that they send you a product that is not exactly what you have requested, or that it turns out that its documentation is not up to date or it does not correspond to the product you wanted.
Lastly, Arduino’s learning resources are plentiful. There are learning kits for sale that include many basic electronic components such as resistors and LEDs. In addition, there are countless tutorials and courses to learn how to use any model, open-source projects to draw on or seek inspiration, good official documentation, active forums, etc.
Easy to use.
Documentation and learning resources.
Disadvantages of Arduino
Arduino has few downsides. Its price – although higher than other manufacturers – is not that exorbitant, and its characteristics are sufficient for most cases. Its programming is different from traditional programming within an operating system, and this could be difficult to learn, but as we have already underlined, you’ll count on very good quality documentation and learning resources.
Its use at an industrial level is limited because it brings some extra components in order to facilitate the programmer’s task, and others to give the flexibility that in many cases is not necessary. In real solutions, the usual thing is to want a board that fits your needs as closely as possible, but, remember, the main objective of Arduino is learning and education. That is why it is common in the industry sector to prefer to solder the connections or use screw shields to have common pins that can be easily disconnected. In addition, Arduino doesn’t meet many of the requirements or certifications necessary to use them in certain contexts, such as those that require high fault tolerance or systems where safety is crucial.
Another possible disadvantage is that if you are looking to develop a more complex product, you will need debugging tools that are not included in the Arduino environment. In short, Arduino can be found in commercial solutions, but its use in the industry tends to be limited to those contexts in which a microcontroller with certain certifications is not required or in which the system is not crucial.
Price is somewhat higher than other manufacturers.
Programming without an operating system could be more complicated.
Not designed specifically for the industry sector.
What is Raspberry Pi? How does it work?
Raspberry Pi is a tech company famous for making its well-known development boards. Like Arduino, its main focus is education and accessibility. They create inexpensive, well-documented chips which make it easy to get into the making of any product. Thanks to this facility, they became known among technology passionates as one of the largest tech companies that invest in learning.
Their product, the Raspberry Pi, is what is known as a Single-Board Computer. That is real computers on a single board. They contain all the components that a computer requires and, in addition, input/output pins to connect it with external circuitry. The price and documentation make them very attractive to computer enthusiasts.
Since they use more resources than a microcontroller or traditional development board, they already bring an operating system and tools which make its use more accessible and familiar to most users.
Over the years, the Raspberry Pi has seen countless uses and has been widely accepted by the technology community thanks to its vast spectrum of possibilities. With a Raspberry Pi you can set up any type of service in your home, be it SSH access (“Secure SHell”), file transmission via FTP (“File Transfer Protocol”), multimedia transmission, storage, setting up video game servers, etc. . It is thanks to this that “own hosting” trend began to emerge, that is, maintaining yourself home services for personal use such as Netflix, Spotify, Google Drive, or Alexa.
Another noteworthy project is Pi-Hole, which uses a Raspberry Pi to block all advertisements from any service that enters your network, be it advertisements in web browsers or mobile applications.
Benefits of using Raspberry Pi
Raspberry Pi is easy to use since it is a very small computer. Any solution that requires hardware with an operating system can make use of an RPi, and its use is widespread in autonomous solutions for home automation, help in network systems, and countless other applications.
The main advantage of an RPi is that it is a pocket-size computer and very cheap. You have a Linux system in its entirety, and you can develop inside just as you would develop on any traditional laptop or desktop.
Easy to use.
They have an operating system, with all the advantages that this brings.
Very small size.
They have input/output pins, and they can also get connected to other electronic components, such as sensors, LEDs, etc.
Cons of Raspberry Pi
The RPis are meant to provide education, learning, and accessibility, that is, they were not originally designed to offer large computing dimensions but to be small, affordable, and easy to distribute and use by any user. Over the years they have been publishing new models that are increasingly robust and focused on technology enthusiasts, with somewhat higher prices and more powerful processors, capable of performing many more day-to-day activities. However, if you are looking for devices with high computing capacities, other more complete alternatives focus specifically on that.
Reduced computing capacity.
Arduino vs Raspberry Pi | We’ll help you choose
After having seen both the advantages and the cons, to help you choose, we are going to present some projects that are being very popular among Arduino vs Raspberry Pi users and we will help you choose by offering some tips.
Home automation system
One of the most common DIY projects is to make home automation control systems. In this case, both Arduino and Raspberry Pi will help us, since they differ just in the way of programming it. There are many very good DIY home automation control systems based on Arduino, which even use Android applications to send voice commands. Raspberry Pi – as we know – brings an operating system and counts on system libraries and various utilities. Here is why it will be easier to program our home system in RPi.
Another project that is becoming very popular is developing smart mirrors. These Mirrors also function as screens in which certain information is displayed and with which you can interact. The most accepted solution is to do it with a Raspberry Pi, which will facilitate the process since we will have to constantly perform several actions: receive the data that we want to show from network services or our sensors, update the status of the screen, maybe receive input from users and act accordingly, and so on.
Many people are starting to maintain their services thanks to the use of Raspberry Pi. By bringing an entire operating system with it, it gives us the option to install a web server like Apache and thus host our website. Or for example, we could also connect the RPi to storage disks, and through services like ownCloud, we could have our online storage cloud, totally free and managed by ourselves. We could also do the same to have audio and video streaming services, also free and independent.
LEDs an Visual Art projects
In the digital era, we find many visual art projects that use LEDs in different formats to create truly amazing compositions of light and color. To control these systems it is common to prefer using Arduino since it facilitates the programming of this kind of project. By changing the arrangement of the LEDs, and with a fairly simple code, we can create our decoration with LEDs fully customizable and configurable. If we add screens to the LEDs that filter the light, we can take the decorative lighting of our house to another level.
Embedded software developers