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Raspberry Pi Gets a Red-Tape Delay; Awaits CE Certificate 135

Posted by timothy
from the bureaucrats-are-middle-management dept.
judgecorp writes "After many delays, the Raspberry Pi computer has arrived in Britain, but has been stopped by the need for a CE approval sticker to say it meets European regulations. The Raspberry Pi Foundation expects the sticker to be a formality, and says it failed to apply because it thought the Pi did not qualify as a 'finished end product.'"
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Raspberry Pi Gets a Red-Tape Delay; Awaits CE Certificate

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  • Seriously? (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward

    Nobody in that foundation even thought they'd need to meet CE regulations? What else have they forgotten about? Is it even RoHS compliant?

    • Re:Seriously? (Score:5, Informative)

      by VMaN (164134) on Thursday March 29, 2012 @12:21PM (#39511315) Homepage

      No, seeing as comparable systems, like BeagleBone etc don't...

      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        by Anonymous Coward

        Correct. They're doing it because their (consistently, horribly unprofessional) distributors insisted that it be done... not because regulations actually apply with this device.

        The foundation desperately needs to get away from these horseshit companies. They've completely dropped the ball at every single step of the process, from the launch itself, to maintaining accurate information for current and future buyers, to present day, last-minute issues with the CE mark.

        The Raspi team was right to go with outs

        • by bsane (148894)

          I don't think we can say its the distro companies they picked...

          Eben claimed that the first Raspi boards would arrive that day, or the next biz day back on 2/25. Now there apparently never was a raspi batch(?), and you're blaming the distributors...

          I imagine this will all get sorted in the end, but I don't think the distributors sole source or problems or the only ones acting unprofessional.

          • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

            by Anonymous Coward

            It might seem unfair, but I understood that a group of people with a big goal, on a small budget, doing something interesting and different... that was going to come with quite a few headaches. So when they pushed the dates, goofed on public updates or didn't handle misinformation properly... well, I understood and felt I had no reason to get cranky.

            But when two mature businesses that sell electronic components for a living can't get their goddamn acts together to save their lives, I have a little less pat

            • by bsane (148894)

              It totally depends on how long those distributors have been involved. I've bought plenty of items from Newark before and have never had a problem. If they agreed back in December to make and distribute these boards- then yeah, they're a problem. If the agreement was made more or less when the agreement was announced (March 3rd), then I'm not the least bit surprised its taken this long, and will take longer still.

              My main problem with whats happened so far: we were told an initial batch of 10k were being prod

              • The initial 10k batch was made on behalf of the Foundation at some factory in China. That batch of 10k are being resold by Farnell and RS. Further production of the Pi will be handled by RS and Farnell.

                So "we're making a batch, they're at the factory being made, bear with us" and "here these companies will now make them!" are both true.

                • Re:Seriously? (Score:4, Insightful)

                  by citizenr (871508) on Thursday March 29, 2012 @02:36PM (#39513415) Homepage

                  The initial 10k batch was made on behalf of the Foundation at some factory in China. That batch of 10k are being resold by Farnell and RS. Further production of the Pi will be handled by RS and Farnell.

                  So "we're making a batch, they're at the factory being made, bear with us" and "here these companies will now make them!" are both true.

                  Thats the thing - RS and Farnell DIDNT SELL A SINGLE BOARD because THEY NEVER HAD ANY to begin with. That 10K batch was a LIE.
                  RS and Farnell took orders for the boards they are going to make _in the future_. Latest mail from Farnell informed me my order will be completed in July ...

                  btw. Rasppi doesnt like when you say thay they SCAMMED you, mods deleted all my comments from their site when I pointed out there never was a 10K batch and my "launch day" order turned out to be preorder for something Farnell is going to make in HALF A YEAR.

                  • http://www.raspberrypi.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/03/1seaofpis.png [raspberrypi.org]
                    gosh this looks like a lot of Raspberry Pi's in shrink wrap, I wonder if maybe you got modded out for some reason other than you make sane reasonable points with evidence in a calm and reasonable manner?
                    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

                      by citizenr (871508)

                      http://www.raspberrypi.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/03/1seaofpis.png [raspberrypi.org]

                      gosh this looks like a lot of Raspberry Pi's in shrink wrap, I wonder if maybe you got modded out for some reason other than you make sane reasonable points with evidence in a calm and reasonable manner?

                      Its 29 or March, there is ~900 boards in the picture, they are still in China.
                      Launch date was 29 February (full 30 days ago), Launch means here you go click and buy. There was nothing to buy.

                      If you read post that came with that picture you will learn they are talking about 2000 boards, so where did the 8000 go? They never existed in February.

                      Btw I just checked and they banned me :-) Banned me for saying they "officially launched" with ZERO inventory.

                      Launch was in February. Farnell says that EARLIEST date

                    • by dotbot (2030980)

                      Launch was in February. Farnell says that EARLIEST date is June. It all stinks. I feel scammed. Its one thing to be incompetent, its another to constantly lie.

                      I'm curious - what happened when you asked for your money back?

                    • by Anonymous Coward
                      Nobody has been charged anything by anybody yet - Farnell and RS will take card details but not charge until they ship. So there's nothing to refund. You can however cancel your preorder - and I hope that the previous idiot does just that, as it means someone else will get a device quicker.
                    • by citizenr (871508)

                      Launch was in February. Farnell says that EARLIEST date is June. It all stinks. I feel scammed.
                      Its one thing to be incompetent, its another to constantly lie.

                      I'm curious - what happened when you asked for your money back?

                      Apparently Farnell didnt charge anyone because they knew they had nothing to ship. They are still waiting till they start shipping.
                      Worst is Rasppi foundation is putting all the blame on Farnell while they are the ones running around in the Media announcing fake launch dates.

                    • by citizenr (871508)

                      cancel your preorder

                      How can you preorder something when you are BUYING IT ON LAUNCH DATE?????
                      Dont you see a problem there?

                    • by dotbot (2030980)
                      I see. Whilst they are not managing expectations at all well and effectively misleading people (though I'm sure it's not deliberate), it's clearly not a scam. To call it a scam would imply your money is being taken in return for nothing with no chance of getting it back. I'm sure you didn't mean 'scam' literally, but I can understand RasPi removing your comments saying that, because you're basically saying they're fraudulent, which is a fairly serious accusation!
              • by jimicus (737525)

                Welcome to the wonderful world of hardware manufacturing. This is why many companies don't announce a damn thing until the product is already on its way to the retailers.

        • by Anonymous Coward

          Right, because no one orders things from Newark/Farnell/element14 distributors ever?

          How about placing blame where it belongs, which is on the hype train the foundation has been flogging to gain popularity while simultaneously delivering: NOTHING.

        • by DrXym (126579)
          I expect these devices do need a CE mark for electro magnetic radiation compliance (that it doesn't interfere with other equipment and its own performance isn't degraded by other equipment) and the companies in question are rightfully stating they're not going to start selling something which would land them in the shit if it is out of compliance. The US is no different with devices requiring FCC certification.
          • by citizenr (871508)

            I expect these devices do need a CE mark for electro magnetic radiation compliance (that it doesn't interfere with other equipment and its own performance isn't degraded by other equipment) and the companies in question are rightfully stating they're not going to start selling something which would land them in the shit if it is out of compliance. The US is no different with devices requiring FCC certification.

            No. Farnell is quite happy selling $4 msp430 Launchpads
            http://uk.farnell.com/texas-instruments/msp-exp430g2/kit-dev-msp430-launchpad/dp/1853793 [farnell.com]

            that dont meet a single norm, no CE, no FCC nothing. Ti just states in the documentation those boards are DEV experimental stuff and thats it. TI sold >100K of them easily.

            http://www.ti.com/lit/ml/slac432a/slac432a.pdf [ti.com]

            “Texas Instruments (TI) provides the enclosed product(s) under the following conditions:
            This evaluation board/kit is intended for use

          • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

            by Anonymous Coward

            Based on how the EU regulations are worded, to qualify as a "finished end product" the board is supposed to have an enclosure. No enclosure, it's not a "finished end product" and it doesn't require EMC. Personally I think this is a silly way of deciding what needs to be compliant, but that's how it's worded.

            I haven't really been following the Raspberry Pi, but it doesn't look like it comes with an enclosure. So it sounds like the distis are just being anal (unless you believe the conspiracy theory discussed

            • by citizenr (871508)

              Based on how the EU regulations are worded, to qualify as a "finished end product" the board is supposed to have an enclosure. No enclosure, it's not a "finished end product" and it doesn't require EMC. Personally I think this is a silly way of deciding what needs to be compliant, but that's how it's worded.

              I haven't really been following the Raspberry Pi, but it doesn't look like it comes with an enclosure. So it sounds like the distis are just being anal (unless you believe the conspiracy theory discussed above).

              Hard to call it conspiracy when you can buy TI boards with no certificates on Farnell.

      • by gl4ss (559668)

        I don't think that Beaglebone is advertised as a "gnu/linux box for 25$" nor don't they have this..
        "What’s a Raspberry Pi?

        The Raspberry Pi is a credit-card sized computer that plugs into your TV and a keyboard. It’s a capable little PC which can be used for many of the things that your desktop PC does, like spreadsheets, word-processing and games. It also plays high-definition video. We want to see it being used by kids all over the world to learn programming."

        yeah sure, it's just a board. budge

    • Re:Seriously? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by bsane (148894) on Thursday March 29, 2012 @12:31PM (#39511491)

      Raspberry Pi delayed? Shocking!

      I thought we were just days away last month?

      http://www.raspberrypi.org/archives/696 [raspberrypi.org]

      TLDR: Saturday 2/25 Eben expected the boards to ship (to them) that day or Monday.

      I'm sure the Pi-ers will mod me down fiercely, but come on guys... I ordered one too, I want one, but lets not pretend this has been handled well.

      • Re:Seriously? (Score:4, Insightful)

        by interkin3tic (1469267) on Thursday March 29, 2012 @01:26PM (#39512341)

        lets not pretend this has been handled well.

        Compared to what? How large consumer electronics organizations release hotly anticipated products? In the case of the Galaxy Nexus or whatever you want to call that phone, I was waiting around for months to hear a date announced. Then it was announced, then it was recanted. Then a worldwide release date that excluded the US was announced. I believe that may have been taken back and forth a time or two, don't really know since it didn't affect me. Then there was a US release date that was complicated by carriers dragging their heels or FCC approval or something like that. One could argue that's not directly samsung's fault, I'd argue it's about as much samsung's fault as this current issue is raspberry pi's fault. Anyway, by the time it finally got here, I had already bought a galaxy S2, which itself was rescheduled several times, once I believe due to some patent issues.

        I hear some of you already typing that this is not a fair comparison, and you're right: samsung has much more money and employees to get it right.

        Also, the street dates on the phones seem to have been announced very shortly before the actual release. I'm assuming that was so that they could squeeze a few more dollars out of people buying new, very soon to be obsolete phones. Which is bullshit.

        Anyway, my point is this: On things I really want to buy, I want to have a rough estimate as to when I can buy it as early as possible. Delays are always going to happen, and I'd rather have a company push the date back and explain why it's delayed rather than the "Available next week. Actually no, it's not going to be, we'll tell you if and when it's happening. That is all."

        • You're right, its not a fair comparison.

          Samsung didn't sell you the phone before they delivered it.
          • by ChipMonk (711367)
            RPi didn't sell me anything, either. No money has changed hands. No money will change hands until it ships. I'm merely in the queue to get one.

            (Way, way down in the queue, apparently...)
        • by gl4ss (559668)

          not really the same though if you didn't pre-order a nexus believing it's already manufactured and have it's shipping pushed back due to them switching volume buttons to a better model.

          it's been handled like shit, delay after delay serially even if the problems would have been parallel.

          they don't seem to even have checked what certifications the comparable parts/devices/boards have. and let's face it when did you see an arduino hocked as a powerful credit card sized computer? meanwhile you can buy actual wa

      • by Microlith (54737)

        And it never fails that there are hate-filled naysayers who attack everything and anything that looks promising.

    • Re:Seriously? (Score:5, Informative)

      by Hatta (162192) on Thursday March 29, 2012 @12:33PM (#39511527) Journal

      It's a bare board. They figured they'd get lumped in with arduino, etc, as "components" and not have to get certified. They're probably legally right, but the supplier doesn't want to take the risk. So they wait.

      I dunno why they're waiting though. They could easily take their product to another supplier and sell out just as fast.

      • by Anonymous Coward

        Except that the Rasp Pi people claimed at another point that it s a finished product to side step import taxes. They can't claim it both ways.

      • by KC1P (907742)

        Actually, the Arduino (or at least, the Arduino Uno I'm holding in my hand right now) does have a CE mark on the back. Now this is making me paranoid about some of my own projects! What does CE testing cost?

      • Re:Seriously? (Score:4, Informative)

        by surmak (1238244) on Thursday March 29, 2012 @01:44PM (#39512603)

        The Arduino Uno [arduino.cc] does have a CE mark. Look at the picture of the back of the board.

        I don't know it is required, but it does have it

      • by thegarbz (1787294)

        They could easily take their product to another supplier and sell out just as fast.

        At this point they are likely to be hit by this nasty little thing called contractual obligations. Given how orders have been placed already.

    • by poetmatt (793785)

      I'm kinda wondering the same - however, remember that people new to manufacturing are not familiar with these requirements. So I believe the term is just "simple ignorance" not intentional negligence.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      OMG! It's the end of the world as we know it. I'm very, very scared. Just imagine all the bad things that *might* happen. We're probably safer just sticking with the established market leaders for all our consumer purchases.

  • by cybrpnk2 (579066) on Thursday March 29, 2012 @12:22PM (#39511325) Homepage
    Next they'll have to prove that a Raspberry Pi is not a Genetically Modified Organism.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      I don't know... They don't look like any raspberry I've ever seen, so it could be.

    • It will all be fine if they clearly label their product with the warning: "May contain gluten".

      • Also: "processed in a facility that may have contained peanuts" (one of the assemblers ate a Snickers bar on break)

  • The foundation are saying they expect the delay to be about two weeks: http://www.techrepublic.com/blog/european-technology/raspberry-pi-shipping-delayed-by-a-8220couple-of-weeks-8221/381

  • Yawn (Score:2, Funny)

    by MightyMartian (840721)

    Been a week since the last Raspberry Pi post. Must make another one quick!

    Next week "Raspberry Pi delayed because appropriate chicken was not sacrificed. Now waiting on God."

    • by Enry (630)

      I'll take it over yet another BitCoin article.

      • As much as I think the Pi is a cool project, I'm beginning to put it in the same category as BitCoin. When I can actually order one and expect to receive it in anything approaching a timely fashion, I'll move it out of that category, for now, it's still "pi in the sky" to me.

        • by TheSync (5291) on Thursday March 29, 2012 @02:47PM (#39513603) Journal

          As much as I think the Pi is a cool project, I'm beginning to put it in the same category as BitCoin.

          This is totally an unfair comparison. You can buy a BitCoin today, you can't buy a Pi!

        • I won't be interested until I can buy a rasberry pi with bitcoin.

          • You can't buy one with PayPal even though they promised that before handing the distribution role off.

            The thing that got me the most about the 'early morning release' deal the Foundation pulled was that they had a little decoy 'online store' tucked off to the side as a link on the main Raspberry Pi web page. All that was available in 'the store' was a keyboard sticker for weeks and weeks. And there was a 'registration' process to follow to get an account on the 'store.' So, I made a password and carefull

  • by Animats (122034) on Thursday March 29, 2012 @12:30PM (#39511485) Homepage

    The Raspberry Pi is already obsolete. Rhombus-Tech [rhombus-tech.net] is coming out with a board based on the Allwinner ARM implementation, 3x as fast as the obsolete CPU the Pi crowd is using. "Mass-volume pricing (just for the CPU card, and therefore excluding tax, shipping, profit, a case and a power supply) looks to be on target for around $15:" They're also looking at reusing the BeagleBoard form factor (which is much like an Arduno) and coming out with a fast Linux board in that format.

    By the time the Raspberry Pi crowd delivers, they'll be obsolete. Much like the OLPC.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      you're saying that a product for which the 'schematics are currently being developed' might be better at some point
      than a product on the verge of shipping?

      thats amazing

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      The Raspberry Pi is already obsolete. Rhombus-Tech [rhombus-tech.net] is coming out with a board based on the Allwinner ARM implementation, 3x as fast as the obsolete CPU the Pi crowd is using. "Mass-volume pricing (just for the CPU card, and therefore excluding tax, shipping, profit, a case and a power supply) looks to be on target for around $15:" They're also looking at reusing the BeagleBoard form factor (which is much like an Arduno) and coming out with a fast Linux board in that format.

      By the time the Raspberry Pi crowd delivers, they'll be obsolete. Much like the OLPC.

      and when will this ship? 3 or 4 years after? =))

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      That's an interesting idea, but how much will it cost, it looks like it may be more expensive for the base unit since from the FAQ:
      "Why is the price of the Allwinner A10 EOMA-68 Card $15?
      It damn well isn't! We are getting a massive amount of misunderstandings about this. We have reported that based on estimates from the Reference Board supplied by the Manufacturer of the SoC that the MATERIALS COST is APPROACHING $15 in MASS VOLUME quantities of 100,000 units.
      That is excluding a case, power supply (which as

      • The EOMA68 cards are not PCMCIA cards! They just happed to have the same footprint. The EOMA68 cards are the motherboard for devices like netbooks, laptops, set-top-boxes, carPC's etc etc. They don't plug into a PCMCIA slot as an accessory. They are the CPU, RAM, Flash, Ethernet, USB, SATA, SPI etc. etc. Controller/Host for the device they are plugged into.

        The EOMA68 cards are COM "computer on modules" to allow OEM's to get to market faster without having to design a motherboard or develop Linux drivers. Th

        • by tftp (111690)

          The OEM's just add a $3-$10 dollar I/O board with connectors with a simple 32bit ARM Cortex-M3 for $1 micro as an EC (embedded controller) such as an ST STM32.

          I'm an OEM. If Rhombus thinks that OEMs will jump onto this product, they are quite optimistic. OEMs will be extremely careful with their product unless the card is uniquely suitable for some quick demo. Reasons being:

          • It is cheaper to buy an MCU from an established manufacturer and solder it to the board than to bother with PCMCIA connectors and
          • I'm not sure where you get your info from about Rhombus but your either misinformed or just plain making it up. The market is mostly high volume OEM's that understand the advntage that Linux, low cost with the full performance they need for their products and markets. These OEM's are already lined up and working with the designs. They are also interested in the low costs due to volume pricing. The complete cards are lower cost than most OEM's are quoted pricing for just the SOC's and DDR3.

            There is also an A

      • The Raspberry Pi doesn't really have 'USB, Ethernet, DVI, and sound out.'

        It had no sound out whatsoever.

        And the ethernet is just an on-board USB dongle permanently welded to the USB hardware. So it's channeled through the USB port (with attendant bottleneck) and has no direct link to the CPU.

        The Raspberry Pi is essentially a smartphone minus the display, the keyboard, and the cellular RF circuitry. It's jiggered into being a 'computer' with software, but a lot of hardware is capable of that. Ask the NetB

        • It has 2 sound outputs, sound over HDMI* and a 3.5mm jack, and I'm fully aware that the Ethernet is via a USB controller, however at the price and performance of the system I don't think many people would care about the ethernet.

          My point was simply that a device already manufactured and awaiting certification won't be rendered obsolete, as they fill slightly different niches defined by capability AND cost. I agree that Raspi has significant similarity to a cut down smartphone, and I'm interested as a hobbyi

    • by gmarsh (839707) on Thursday March 29, 2012 @12:48PM (#39511745)

      The $15 card you're describing is a PCMCIA card form factor. Feel free to explain how to power it, plug a keyboard into it and hook it up to their TV without another $15 card with all the connectors you need for a practical application.

      Also, the Broadcom on the Pi is about as obsolete as the ATMega parts used on the Arduino card. It gets the job done in the application it's put in. God forbid it's slower than a high end Cortex-A8 processor...

      • Well you could power them via USB-otg and plug a keyboard into them directly using a USB wallplug power supply for ~$1.

        But an I/O board itself for something like a desktop PC would only require a simple PCB ~$1, with TV encoder $0.50ea, RCA jack $0.15, RJ45 jack $0.50 and some passives $1 plus a power supply $2. So under $6 so far.

        Add a SATA connector $0.20ea (if you want a HD), and some extra USB connectors for another $1 and larger power supply and you're still under $10 including a somple case.

        Fell free

    • by DrYak (748999) on Thursday March 29, 2012 @01:34PM (#39512435) Homepage

      Raspberry Pi have reached the step, where there's actual hardware, which has arrived in Britain (and so is alread under the hands of the makers, can already be tested/developped on/hacked with/whatever by the internal developpers) and just awaits CE certification before getting shipped to the end-users.

      The EOMA-68 card is currently on the paper stages:

      The prototype schematics are presently being developed.

      It will be some time before it ship, too.

      Each time that some small scale, partially or fully open maker wants to put hardware on the market (be it Pandora console, OpenMoko FreeRunner phone or its newer GoldenDelicious motherboard, OLPC, Raspbery Pi, Always Innovating's SmartBooks, and countless other project), there are delays.
      Because these aren't done by large-scale constructor with lots of expertise in designing circuit and who can leverage their big numbers of mass order to get priority for components. (Big names like Asus have experience. Big names like Apple get prioritised when ordering 4mio CPUs)
      On the other hand, as these process are publicly documented, newer projects will learn from the mistakes of older ones.
      So you can expect that: when the next ARM-based gizmo gets announced, there will be delays, but fewer than with previous projects, and the device will be less likely to be obsolated, or ridden with un expected bugs. (See the difference with the first OpenMoko phones, which went thourgh several problems, and took longer to complete, and the newest motherboard from GoldenDelicious which was produced with a much shorter delay).

      Maybe in 5-10 years, such projects will have collectively cumulated enough experience so they can avoid common pitfalls, share some design elements, designing experience, and so on. And thus most projects of this kind will be really faster to reach end-users.

      But currently, the kind of delays that the Raspberry Pi expirienced are normal, and will probably still be seen with other similar small scale projects.

  • it's starting to feel like Duke Nukem Forefer neverending saga. really don't like it, every week ther's some delay for things that obviously could have been correctly addressed way long before even starting the production, but noone took care of, speechless
  • I would think Xp embedded and the new Windows Mobile is the prefered platform from MS. CE is or in the process of being depreciated. No sense installing it for new devices as it is being retired.

  • Shady. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by flimflammer (956759) on Thursday March 29, 2012 @01:12PM (#39512095)

    I'm confused how the Pi folks thought they could claim the device is both unfinished and finished to avoid the import taxes and CE certification? It kind of makes me question their competence.

    • Maybe the legal definition of a finished product with respect to import taxes is different from the definition with respect to CE marking...

    • by gl4ss (559668)

      that's the most insightful thing I've read all day. mods for you. I had forgotten they were tax dodging with that. this could very well be the reason. they tick a box saying it's a finished product and bam distributors start wanting ce certification on it.

    • Re:Shady. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by DaveGod (703167) on Thursday March 29, 2012 @04:08PM (#39514651)

      Because import taxes and CE dictate different definitions of finished product.

      This might imply your questions of competence should be directed to them instead, but bear in mind the respective organisations have quite different objectives and anyway the term is clearly a subjective one. It's not justifiable to burden one with the requirements of the other just so that the definition is consistent.

      The thing that leads you back to questioning their competence may be that if they knew what they were doing they probably would have done it even if not required. It's common practice to do it just because it makes it a lot easier for anyone down the line who is turning it into a product that does require CE. Open a complex consumer product (your PC, for example) and you'll find CE stickers on about everything in there.

      But it's a classic victim of it's own success. Basically all their strategy and decisions assumed a niche/enthusiast type product and their resulting actions may well have been perfectly appropriate had that been the case.

      • Basically all their strategy and decisions assumed a niche/enthusiast type product and their resulting actions may well have been perfectly appropriate had that been the case.

        To be fair to the Foundation, they currently envision the RasPi in it's initial rollout as a niche/enthusiast product. The first 10K build is a preliminary release. Their intention is for the board to be pedagogical learning device for kids to use. These first boards are going out to the frenzied enthusiasts to get the ball rolling

    • by thegarbz (1787294)

      Because pretty much every development board in the industry is defined as "unfinished" and doesn't require CE approval.

      You won't see a CE marking on an Arduino or a Beagelboard either. Really I also wonder if a product that is sold as an open circuit board even qualifies for CE certification.

      Also it doesn't really fit into any of these categories [ce-marking.org] either.

      • by Formalin (1945560)

        Well, the technical difference between a raspberry pi and... an all-in-one motherboard (say atom) is what?

        Both need power supplies. Both have no case. Both have a CPU and video and various IO. The motherboard arguably needs more assembly (needs ram, at least). Same end use (part of a computer system). However, only one of these has the CE mark. (The motherboard).

        I think beagle skirts by via being more techy. It's not marketed for school children, as-is, so if it is manufactured into something, the EMI level

        • by thegarbz (1787294)

          I would go the other way and say that motherboards shouldn't need it. Take a look at the list of devices which require the CE marking. It's a case of consumer protection. What does the consumer need to be protected from on an ultra-low voltage device? Powersupplies should have a CE marking sure, but a device that can be touched without giving you a buzz, that's sold uncased, and can't be used without additional devices?

          Atmel's STK500 is used in schools and universities around the world quite extensively and

      • by zzyzyx (1382375)

        1) It's not a dev board. They say right on their website "An ARM GNU/Linux box for $25."
        2) They declared themselves that the board was a finished product to avoid UK import taxes. You can't have it both ways.

        • by thegarbz (1787294)

          Being a finished product is not the only part of a CE requirement. There's other considerations such as the power levels or the type of device.

        • by mikechant (729173)

          You can't have it both ways.

          If the CE certification body uses a different definition of 'finished product' to the relevant tax authority, (as they almost certainly do, being effectively totally unrelated bodies), there is absolutely *no* reason that you can't 'have it both ways'.

    • Indeed, it seems there was some serious wishful thinking going on. The Foundation's people are so heavily invested in the project that they probably can't see it very objectively. Not too surprising I guess.

      The BIS [bis.gov.uk] has just given them the bad news of how things really stand though. Here is a new update from Element 14's FAQ [element14.com] (one of the two Raspberry Pi distributors), quoting news from the Foundation's Eben Upton:


      • HOT OFF THE PRESS UPDATE FROM EBEN UPTON OF RASPBERRY PI EARLIER TODAY:
      • "We have spoken with
  • "Raspberry Pi Foundation previously believed certification will not be necessary" reads the article. everything from electric pencil sharpeners to dishwashers goes through a CE certification so why wouldnt this? its roughly the same as UL in the states, and basically keeps things like toasters and tea kettles from murdering users.
    • by Vairon (17314)

      Many other dev boards don't have CE certification either. Look through digikey.com or sparkfun.com at dev boards and you'll notice many are without CE certification. The RPF always planned on getting CE certification later this year before the educational release of the Raspberry Pi was made. At that point it would have also had a case and a manual. The only reason it's getting a CE cert now is because their distributors want it.

      • by TheSync (5291)

        Many other dev boards don't have CE certification either

        Yeah, but the Arduino UNO is CE and FCC certified...

        • by Vairon (17314)

          Yes it is after 7 years of releasing their development boards. The original Arduino was not CE certified though. The Raspberry Pi Foundation was also planning on their original boards not being CE certified and subsequent boards getting CE certification.

  • A formality? (Score:4, Informative)

    by tftp (111690) on Thursday March 29, 2012 @01:18PM (#39512203) Homepage

    The Raspberry Pi Foundation expects the sticker to be a formality

    CE tests are more strict than FCC. If they have a leaky oscillator on the board - which is extremely likely if the board has poor ground or no shielding - then they are finished. I usually test prototypes on the bench, using a spectrum analyzer and a field probe. If that looks reasonable then the board goes into the chamber for measurements of real values.

    It is not easy to meet those requirements. They are not liberal. The field will be measured up to several GHz, and the passing criteria is hard to meet if you have any sort of fast switching logic in your design. R-Pi has that.

    They will be even testing for the noise that the switching power supply feeds back into the AC power. They better pick a good power supply. But wires are always a problem - they radiate as hell. That's why you often see ferrite beads on power cords - they are there not because the OEM decided to splurge on unnecessary stuff.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      1) when did ./ become oldnews.com? This has been known for a solid week. It's a development board which is not REQUIRED to get a CE mark, but the distrubutor is requesting it.

      2) The rasberry pi does not contain an AC power supply, they would be testing with a DC input, which should be much easier. Of course this is exactly why they dont require a CE mark on development equipment.

      • by maxfresh (1435479)

        The Raspberry Pi is not a development board, no matter how much its fanboys repeat that same false assertion.

        A development board is marketed and sold to companies and engineers to facilitate their research and development of finished end products based on the architecture embodied in the development board.

        In contrast, the RPi is being marketed, sold, and hyped to death, as a very low cost general purpose computer, based on a proprietary and IP-restricted Broadcom SOC, to be used by school children (and hobb

    • CE tests are more strict than FCC.

      I thought it had been harmonized so everyone just uses EN55022.

      The field will be measured up to several GHz

      The latest EN55022 2006+A1:2007 version goes to 6GHz. The most problematic ranges I've seen for small devices like this are still in the 30-300MHz range.

      • by tftp (111690)

        I thought it had been harmonized so everyone just uses EN55022.

        The last official testing that I was part of (about 8 months ago) involved different methods for FCC and CE marks. I don't have the folder with results with me, though, can't say much more. The last time I worked at the large company, they had special people who were responsible for tracking all these legislative changes.

        The most problematic ranges I've seen for small devices like this are still in the 30-300MHz range.

        I have seen harmonic

        • ...they had special people who were responsible for tracking all these legislative changes.

          No doubt. Sometimes the continuous changes seem like a full employment program.

          I don't suggest looking at emissions testing as a formality.

          Sound advice. I've seen and shed plenty of tears after a great functional design gets sent back to meet ever shifting regulatory requirements.

  • by ze_jua (910531) <jailh&free,fr> on Thursday March 29, 2012 @01:48PM (#39512661)
    As the Raspberry Pi Foundation failed to produce these first boards in the UK ( see this article [raspberrypi.org], previously linked on Slashdot [slashdot.org]), the just have to put the China Exports [wikipedia.org] CE mark. :)
  • What if it needs board mods to meet ESD - what'll they do with 10000 units? Muppets.

    Yeah and maybe Farnell are being stupid just because CE marking covers safety too.

  • The articles I've read about this are not very clear about whether or not this holds up the shipments destined for the United States. I don't understand why the retailers would be worried about having EU approval for the lots destined for the US, unless I'm missing something. As a side note, damn Newark, they pushed back my ship date to August without even sending an email notification.
    • by tftp (111690)

      I don't understand why the retailers would be worried about having EU approval for the lots destined for the US, unless I'm missing something.

      You may be missing this [hackolog.com]. Can't sell to general public without FCC compliance of some sort. It's not CE, the rules are slightly different, but you have to test for that. There are many resources on the Internet about that, all confusing to uninitiated.

      If R-Pi was never tested for CE then it's virtually guaranteed that the board never saw the inside of an anechoic

  • Quote from Element 14 (one of the two distributers) Full FAQs Here [element14.com]

    The current situation is:
    2000 Raspberry Pi’s are now in the UK. Pictures are posted here for anyone who doubts their existence!
    The compliance teams of element14, RS and Raspberry Pi are working round the clock with the testing houses to assess the product now. Any issues that are identified (hardware or software) will then need to be rectified and we will ensure this happens as quickly as is humanly possible.
    There are different com

    • by citizenr (871508)

      Quote from Element 14 (one of the two distributers) Full FAQs Here [element14.com]

      The current situation is:
      2000 Raspberry Pi’s are now in the UK. Pictures are posted here for anyone who doubts their existence!

      Rasppi Foundation claims boards are in UK, but post pictures from Chinese factory, they claim 2000 boards, but there is ~900 in the pictures
      just like they claimed they already had 10000 boards READY TO BE SOLD a month ago
      more lies :(

      Worst product launch ever. If they really wanted to launch it quickly all they had to do was give blueprints and access to Broadcom chips to chinese factories. Btw This is why there wont be any third party clones - Broadcom doesnt sell without NDA and high volume commitments, ch

  • The problem seems to be the HDMI cable radiating extraneous signals [element14.com] and a solution maybe found in the cable.

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