SMILE Plug: The cloud for the classroom
At the recent CES trade show in Las Vegas, in tandem with its OLPC tablet announcements, Marvell presented its SMILE Plug single board computer, which has a Wi-Fi access point enabling it to create a classroom Wi-Fi network. The device runs mobile teaching and learning software developed by Stanford University as part of its Stanford Mobile Inquiry-based Learning Environment (SMILE) program. This enables teachers to generate a 'micro-cloud' for up to 60 students which runs the Stanford SMILE Junction Server software.
The SMILE Plug consists of an Armada 300 SoC on a CPU with a clock speed ranging from 1.6 to 2 GHz. I/O on the device includes two Gigabit Ethernet ports, two USB 2.0 ports and an SD card slot, while internally there is 512 MB of flash memory and 512 MB of DDR3 memory. It also has an Avastar 88W8764 Wi-Fi SoC, which offers IEEE 802.11a/b/g/n on 2.4 or 5 GHz. The SMILE Plug is also able to cope with power outages, thanks to an integrated lithium ion battery. Marvell is planning to launch the device in spring 2012. Pricing information is not yet available.