The updated computer board also has the future potential for AI and Machine Learning (ML) teaching. The new updated feature-rich micro:bit will cost the same as the original version.

The Micro:bit Educational Foundation worked with teachers and the micro:bit community to decide which updates were necessary. One of the most popular suggested enhancements was for a built-in speaker and microphone to allow creativity with sound and music.

Updates include:

• The Nordic nRF52833 MPU operates at 64MHz and has 512kB of flash storage (double the storage in comparison of the original micro:bit), and an eightfold increase in RAM to 128kB. The micro:bit also features a discrete regulator that can supply up to 200mA of current to external accessories.

• A MEMS sensor microphone, a 9mm magnetic loudspeaker and a dedicated recording LED to indicate when the microphone is on.

• Official micro:bit editors support both versions of the micro:bit with a single universal hex file download.

• A touch-sensitive logo enabling users to take on new exciting tasks or expand previous micro:bit projects.

• A built-in sleep/off mode allows the board to be powered-down with batteries connected.

Both the Micro:bit Educational Foundation and Farnell provide a range of resources to support the micro:bit boards.

Gareth Stockdale, CEO of the Micro:bit Educational Foundation, said: “We have worked closely with our community to make it even easier to get the most out of the device. Getting hands-on and experimenting with the micro:bit is critical to helping children better understand important technologies early in their development, and we aim to make this as fun, accessible and affordable as possible.”

Lee Turner, Global Head of Semiconductors and SBC at Farnell said: “As the exclusive manufacturer of the micro:bit, Farnell has worked closely with the Micro:bit Educational Foundation throughout the design and development process and managed supply chain to ensure availability of the board. The updated micro:bit signifies a major step forward and enables students to gain insight into an even broader range of technologies to support them as they prepare for careers in the digital economy.”

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