1 year ago

Sales soar and Raspberry Pi beats Commodore 64

Raspberry Pi becomes third best-selling general purpose computer of all time

Recent Raspberry Pi sales figures show that the humble board is, in fact, the world’s third best-selling general purpose computer.

Raspberry Pi achieved this milestone by selling north of 12.5 million boards in five years. This figure beats the previous third place holder, the Commodore 64.

“The Commodore 64 had, until recently, the distinction of being the third most popular general purpose computing platform,” Eben Upton told a crowd at the fifth birthday party. “That’s what I’m here to celebrate,” he said, “we are now the third most popular general purpose computing platform after the Mac and PC.”

Third place might sound like the bronze medal, but given the astronomical sales of Windows PC and Apple Macintosh, it’s an incredible achievement.

Outselling the Commodore 64 cements Raspberry Pi in the annals of history.

Commodore 64 computer

Source: Wikipedia

Not bad considering the original plan was to produce between 10 and 20,000 boards.

“And we did it together, and it’s kind of wonderful,” said Eben

Eben also revealed that the Pi Zero W sold about 100,000 in its first four days. So it looks seem like the Raspberry Pi computer platforms will keep selling for many years to come.

Raspberry Pi sales percentages: what is the best-selling Raspberry Pi?

Raspberry Pi Sales Chart

The Raspberry Pi Model 3 is the best-selling Raspberry Pi. This chart shows that Raspberry Pi 3 has accounted for almost a third of all Raspberry Pi boards sold.

The Model 3 sits next to its immediate predecessor, the Raspberry Pi 2B+ (which has the same board shape but a slightly slower CPU). These two boards account for over half of all Raspberry Pi boards sold.

The rest of the sales are between older models. The original Model A accounts for just 2 percent of sales. So keep one if you’ve got it as they’re pretty rare.

We should point out, before the Commodore fan club arrives, that there are discrepancies in the total number of sales of the C64. The 12.5 million figure comes from an analysis of serial numbers. This article by Michael Steil explains in detail why the 12.5 million number is accurate. We hold it to be the most accurate analysis of Commodore 64 sales (other opinions are available).

Here on The MagPi, we’re huge fans of Commodore computers. They formed an integral part of our coding childhoods. And it’s easily programmable computers, like the Commodore 64, Sinclair Spectrum and BBC Micro that provided inspiration for the Raspberry Pi itself.

We can take huge pride that the Raspberry Pi has reignited the fire for home computing and digital making. The boom in home coding was sparked by computers from the 1980s, including the Commodore 64. Here’s to many more years of digital making.