Intel's tiny Compute Stick is getting noticed.

Intel's new Compute Stick. A portable Windows or Linux based computer. 

Intel's new Compute Stick. A portable Windows or Linux based computer. 

Computers just keep getting smaller, and Intel has now introduced the world to the smallest consumer PC ever—the Compute Stick. As I write this, Compute Sticks running Windows 8.1 operating system cost $150 and those with Linux are $110. Intel states that the USB dongle will go on sale at the end of May 2015 or the beginning of the following month. Give the experts at Rethink Associates to learn about where to find them and the official release date.

How to Use the Mini Computer

The Compute Stick is a basic computer that will allow you browse the Internet, check email and watch streaming videos with apps like Netflix and Hulu. Springfield computer repair experts Rethink Associates state that you use the Compute Stick by plugging it into a computer monitor or into a television with HDMI. The stick has a full-sized USB port and Bluetooth 4.0 so you can connect a mouse and keyboard.

Compute Stick Specs

  • Processor: Intel quad-core
  • RAM: 2 gigabytes
  • Storage: 32 gigabytes
  • Wi-Fi: 802.11 b/g/n

The Mini Computer Trend

Intel is far from the first company to come out with a plug-and-play computer on a stick. Previous models have included those with ARM processors and Android software. Most of those are running Windows 8.1 and Intel Atom processors. Computer repair specialists point out that the main difference between those sticks and the Intel Compute Stick is that Intel is backing its model and offering official support for it.

Google and ASUS are also in on the small-computer trend with their own version of a miniature computer. The two companies collaborated to create the ASUS Chromebit, a computer that’s the size of a USB memory stick. The Chromebit is a full computing device with a Chrome operating system, Rockchip quad-core processor, dual-band Wi-Fi 802.11ac.

The latest miniature computers give a new meaning to the term portable computers. While they are new to market, we are seeing a trend as phones get larger and more powerful, and computers get smaller and smaller. The experts at Rethink Associates fully expect to see convergence in the next 5 years, meaning we will see these devices come together, giving you the power of an Intel chip and the functions of a top end phone. To find out more about the Compute Stick or the Chromebit, or learn if mini computers right for you, get in touch with a Springfield computer repair store staff member at Rethink Associates.