Asus Hooks Up With Google to Create Tinker Board for AI

Asus Japan announced this week that it'll show off two new single-board computers at the upcoming ET & IoT Technology 2019 event kicking off November 20 in Yokohama, Japan. The latest Tinker Edge T and Tinker Edge R are designed specifically for IoT (Internet of Things) and edge AI applications.

The Tinker Edge T measures 85 x 56mm, which is around the size of a credit card. The Tinker Edge R adheres to the Pico-ITX form factor (100 x 72mm). Both single-board computers depend on a small heatsink with an accompanying cooling fan to stay cool during operation. 

Asus Tinker Edge T

Tinker Edge T

Tinker Edge T (Image credit: Asus)

The Tinker Edge T utilizes a NXP i.MX 8M SoC, consisting of a quad-core Cortex-A53 up to 1.5 GHz with one Cortex-M4F real-time core. The system also relies on the Vivante GC7000 Lite 3D graphics engine and Google's Coral Edge tensor processing unit (TPU), which is optimized for Tensorflow Lite and boasts performance up to 4  tera operations per second (TOPS).

Asus Tinker Edge R

Tinker Edge R

Tinker Edge R (Image credit: Asus)

The Tinker Edge R employs a Rockchip RK3399 Pro system on chip (SoC) that boasts a three-in-one design. The chip combines the dual-core Cortex-A72, which runs a clock speed of up to 1.8 GHz and quad-core Cortex-A53 up to 1.4 GHz with a quad-core Mali-T860 GPU at up to 800 MHz. It's also equipped with a neural processing unit (NPU) capable of delivering up to 3 TOPS of performance.

Asus' announcement states that the Tinker Edge R and Tinker Edge T are compatible with the Debian and Android operating systems. However, we expect them to support other Linux distributions and operating systems, such as Windows 10 IoT Core or FreeRTOS.

With a focuses on AI processing, both boards face competition in Nvidia's Jetson Nano, which features a quad-core Arm A57 at 1.45 GHz, along with Nvidia Mawell graphics.

Asus didn't reveal the pricing or availability of the new single-board computers.

Zhiye Liu
News Editor and Memory Reviewer

Zhiye Liu is a news editor and memory reviewer at Tom’s Hardware. Although he loves everything that’s hardware, he has a soft spot for CPUs, GPUs, and RAM.