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Raspberry Pi 5 gets a $70 AI add-on kit

In a nutshell: Raspberry Pi has launched a complete AI kit that delivers an affordable on-ramp to the world of neural networks, artificial intelligence, and machine learning. The kit, developed in collaboration with Israeli AI technology company Hailo, combines Raspberry Pi’s recently launched M.2 HAT+ add-on board with a Hailo-8L AI accelerator module. The AI module affords 13 tera-operations per second (TOPS) of inferencing performance, freeing up the paired Raspberry Pi’s CPU to focus on other tasks.

The M.2 HAT+ serves as the communications bridge between the AI module and the PI using the PCIe interface, and comes with a thermal pad fitted between the two to improve heat dissipation. The kit also comes with all of the necessary hardware to install a Raspberry Pi active cooler on the combo for even better thermals.

The kit is compatible with both first- and third-party cameras for vision applications. In fact, the setup can run multiple neural networks off a single camera (or one or more neural networks using two cameras at the same time).

Raspberry Pi’s Naush Patuck said one of the major hurdles in creating real-world, AI-based vision apps is the complexity involved in integrating the AI framework with the camera subsystem. The company put a lot of effort into simplifying the process, and was able to create advanced apps using only a few hundred lines of C++ code when using the pre-installed Hailo Tappas post-processing libraries.

Newcomers interested in trying their hand at AI are encouraged to check out Hailo’s extensive model zoo, which features an array of pre-trained neural network models that can be deployed on the hardware. Raspberry Pi also has lots of documentation for the AI kit online, and Hailo also maintains full technical specs for its Hailo-8L AI accelerator.

The Raspberry PI 5 AI Kit is available now from approved resellers priced at $70. You will also need a Pi 5 to pair with it, which will set you back an additional $80 if you don’t already own one.

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