Print 16 comment(s) - last by tastyratz.. on Jan 5 at 4:33 PM

VIA VB7009 Mini-ITX mainboard  (Source: VIA)
No Android support mentioned for VIA's latest mini-ITX board

VIA has unveiled its latest embedded mainboard in the tiny mini-ITX form-factor. The new mainboard is called the VB7009 and measures 17cm square. VIA is aiming it at the POS and kiosk industry the board has a VIA Nano X2 processor onboard that is paired with the VX900 media system processor.
That media processor allows the board to support HD video with up to 1080p resolution. The default processor speed is 1.2GHz for the X2, while other CPUs are available including a 1.6GHz VIA C7-D and a 1GHz C7. The little board has four USB 2.0 ports, three COM pin headers, and a LPC connector. It also rocks a single COM port, keyboard ports, and three audio jack inputs.
The board will support Microsoft OS' and popular Linux flavors in multiple configurations. The VB7009 unfortunately doesn’t call out Android support, which is something VIA was pushing for its embedded line.
"The range of customer needs for interactive embedded devices is rapidly expanding," said Epan Wu Head of the VIA Embedded Platform Division, VIA Technologies, Inc. "The VIA VB7009 provides a flexible and cost effective solution that can be configured to satisfy a broad range of customer requirements."

Source: VIA

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By XZerg on 1/3/2012 12:04:59 PM , Rating: 2
Why does Via dish out products that does not provide any real benefit over existing products and to make things worse are lacking in features:
1) no pcie (has pci)
2) no hdmi or dvi w/ hdcp
3) memory i hope is ddr3/sodimm ddr3
4) has parallel and ps2 ports (ps2 i might understand but parallel - why is that still around...).

who in their company approves such things?

RE: Why?
By Cheesew1z69 on 1/3/2012 12:09:43 PM , Rating: 4

VIA is aiming it at the POS and kiosk industry

You don't need a majority of what you said is missing for a POS or Kisok.

RE: Why?
By bitterman0 on 1/3/2012 1:01:05 PM , Rating: 2
True. But if you expect to connect this board to any modern panel (would be the Kiosk mode, I presume), you might find the lack of HDMI connectivity a deal-breaking design flaw.

Coming to think of it, VIA mini-ITX boards have had uninspired [obsolete] designs for the past few years now. I mean, there has to be a market for these boards, and quite a extensive one, for VIA to continue this trend.

RE: Why?
By sprockkets on 1/3/2012 1:57:57 PM , Rating: 2
Embedded panels don't use HDMI, they use basically the same tech your laptop uses to connect the screen to the mobo. It's basically DVI except without the plug. It looks like it is on the mobo.

RE: Why?
By MrTeal on 1/3/2012 2:04:26 PM , Rating: 3
I'm sure there is, even for kiosks. There's a huge amount of legacy hardware out there in the POS/Kiosk world, and while I agree that HDMI would be nice for someone want to build a new system, it's a lot less important than things like the LPT, PS/2 and serial ports.

RE: Why?
By Solandri on 1/3/2012 4:01:38 PM , Rating: 3
Yeah, a lot of people in the tech industry fail to realize that businesses don't buy every shiny new toy which comes out every 18 months. They typically use products for 5 years at a minimum. 7-15 years is more common. There is a lot of old, legacy hardware out there which still works, still does its job fine, but needs PS/2, parallel, or serial connectors.

I've seen a business using a ~15 year old phone PBX managed by a Windows 95 box, hooked up over the serial and parallel ports. Sure they could've spent $5-$10k replacing it with something new. But it did everything they needed, didn't cause any problems, and still worked reliably. The best I could do was mirror the setup to a second (old) computer with identical hardware as a backup, in case the original one ever died. Just because technophiles like playing with the latest gadgets and features doesn't mean they make the most business sense. The 2-3 year duty cycle for computer hardware and software is the exception not the norm.

RE: Why?
By Samus on 1/3/12, Rating: -1
RE: Why?
By tastyratz on 1/5/2012 4:33:03 PM , Rating: 2
sometimes these work for extremely custom products or programming very specifically tailored to an industry function. If for example an assembly line robot was programmed by a serial cable, what use is it to replace with usb? what functional gain?
Sometimes working from the support side of things it can be tug of war with the business when something still "works" but in the end the ROI on specialty equipment is a hard sell. By lacking the things mentioned it may not work for a htpc sure, but if the price point follows compared to an atom AIO then it will perfectly suit the needs of a business.

RE: Why?
By MGSsancho on 1/5/2012 1:42:17 AM , Rating: 2
Obviously you know much more about VIA's customers than themselves. This board has four COM ports, why put so many unless customers requested it. VIA does sell boards with pcie, if a customer wants one, VIA sells them. If a customers application requires ddr3 then VIA has platforms where that is available. Parallel ports are still common for legacy devices. This board is a lowpower product that has a modern and fast cpu that has 10+ years of legacy support. There are many devices and equipment worth moree than your annual salary that run just fine and just need a replacement mobo. Market demands and another market will supply.

RE: Why?
By dawza on 1/5/2012 9:19:11 AM , Rating: 2
The kids and "hardcore enthusiasts" fail to understand the basic concept that in the real world, raw performance and nifty features take a back seat to reliability, ease of integration, support/lifecycle, etc.

These are the same readers who believe that the embedded market will dump x86 and migrate to ARM due to the recent increases in ARM capabilities in the consumer segment...which sounds quite reasonable until one considers that the overwhelming majority of the embedded market has been, and continues to use ARM, and those on x86 had a very good reason to go with that architecture to begin with.

We have $20K+ analytical machines running on 15+ year-old x86 systems. The connection requires a serial interface, basic VGA, and a LAN port. These machines run 24/7, and they work perfectly well. If and when something goes wrong, we will replace them with an appropriate x86 machine with native serial and VGA so that end-users can continue to work as if nothing happened. HDMI, quad-core CPUs, etc, would be useless at best.

Or, maybe we're all crazy, and it turns out that all along, ATMs would, in fact, be better off with an overclocked quad core CPU, a dedicated high-power GPU, and HDMI/DP-out. I mean, who wouldn't want to watch 3D 1080P video while posting a status update to FB during a transaction?

"We are going to continue to work with them to make sure they understand the reality of the Internet.  A lot of these people don't have Ph.Ds, and they don't have a degree in computer science." -- RIM co-CEO Michael Lazaridis
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