Friday, April 26, 2013

Buying Your Raspberry Pi

There's a whole lot of things that are bothering me about retailers at the moment.

For example... we New Zealander's shouldn't be putting up with a 15% surcharge. Those cafe's and restaurants are already busier than any other day of the year and it's their choice to be open. If they chose to take the risk for that extra business, it shouldn't be up to the customer to hedge their bets. They could instead observe the public holiday.... Bold I know....

Hallenstein's was just plain scummy. No two ways about it. It might have been different if they had actually communicated the fact that it was an online sale only but unfortunately, that's not what happened.

I've just taken a bunch of screenshots of Jetstar. Their advertised price is VERY different from the final price. Every time you hit the "continue" button, some other fee is added. So each time you hit continue, you have to look for the place to opt out. Anyway, my calculations had an increase of almost 40% in "optional" extras excluding the booking and service fee which isn't revealed before putting your credit card details in.

But something that's really bothered me of late: Element14, one of the 2 primary suppliers for Raspberry Pi, will no longer sell Raspberry Pi's to consumers in New Zealand. Instead, they list "Raspberry Pi Approved Retailers". For New Zealand, that's Trademe apparently...

No mention of the other primary supplier - RS Components - who will still sell to consumers in New Zealand. Or nicegear.

Friggin' Trademe with all of it's flaky information and a whooping $79 buy now (plus $5 delivery)... As opposed to the $47.50 I just paid at RS Components and $65 that nicegear (they have a GREAT range of accessories) have them for...


  1. As if the surcharge on a public holiday isn't enough, the argument behind it of "but, they are a business, they have to make money some how; you know, pay bills and what not".

    Fine, but that is no license to rip me off. Am I (a customer) some how less important because I don't have a business? Do I some how not have bills to pay?

    1. It's a rather sad justification.

      Of course, that's usually reframed. It's not "we have to make money somehow" but rather "We have to pay our staff somehow". Never mind the increased patronage, the fact that time and a half and time in lieu is the cost of doing business in exchange for that increased patronage or the fact that it's *their* choice to take on those increased expenses.

      I probably wouldn't have as much of a problem about it if they were very clear, before going into such a place, about it. i.e. if they're going to charge 15%, allow patrons to make an informed choice rather than a naff sign over the cash register.

      It's almost a form of false advertising - here are our menu's and here are the prices. Oh and when you get to the cash register, you're then informed of the 15%. It sucks that we've come to expect it so we end up thinking to ourselves "oh that's right. This is one of those days that cafes and restaurants act like scum" as if it's our fault (for forgetting).

      Meanwhile, we could go to Trademe for our coffee... Recommended retailer an' all...

  2. I have been selling Raspberry Ketone Juice for years and still I'm not sure what Raspberry Pi is all about. Is it Raspberry Juice or something related to software? Care to let me know. Thanks in advance.

    1. Hi Mantis,

      Raspberry Pi is a computer.... It's a SBC (Single Board Computer) and it's a game changer.

      Basically, you can buy this tiny little computer. It's kind of based on a cellphone except without the screen, buttons, enclosure etc. A circuit board... it's a circuit board that you can plug in a monitor, keyboard and mouse and other odds and ends.

      The Rapsberry Pi was a game changer in that it's run as a non-profit. Which means that this is the first time individuals have been able to buy this sort of power, in this sort of size, for this sort of price.

      Like the XO from OLPC (One Laptop Per Child), it's spawned a whole product line. OLPC can be credited for netbooks. Raspberry Pi can be credited for an influx of SBCs on the market:
      Banana Pi and Parallella which both take on the education aspects of the Raspberry Pi.
      The Cubie range of boards (CubieBoard, CubieBord 2, CubieTruck etc.).
      The Beagle range (BeagleBoard, BeagleBoard-xM, BeagleBone, BeagleBone-Black)
      Hummingbird etc.

      Where previously you'd end up paying $150US or so for a horribly underpowered and inflexible SBC, Raspberry Pi resulted in a deluge of options at prices where hackers (I'm using the original meaning of the word hacker i.e. those who like to tinker) are able to explore different ways of using that power.

      If you take nothing else away from this comment... go and have a look at this link. Basically, people being able to do awesome stuff where cost isn't TOO big a barrier.