Hardware New Technology

BBC micro:bit


The BBC has announced the BBC micro:bit, a pocket-sized programmable computer which is to be given free to every child in year 7 (11-12 years old) across the UK. Its aim is to help children learn the basics of programming.


Technical specifications for the device will be available as open-source.

The device measures 4cm by 5cm and key features include:

  • Array of 25 red LEDs
  • Two programmable buttons
  • On-board motion detector or “accelerometer”
  • Built-in compass or “magnetometer” (includes an in-built magnet, and can sense certain types of metal)
  • Bluetooth Smart Technology
  • Five Input and Output (I/O) rings to connect the micro:bit to other devices such as the Raspberry Pi or other sensors

(Original Link:

Software will include Blockly, Python and the Microsoft TouchDevelop platform.

The BBC and partners have committed to provide up to one million micro:bits before the end of 2015. The micro:bit will also be made commercially available later in 2015

Product Partners include ARM, Barclays, element14, Freescale, Lancaster University, Microsoft, Nordic Semiconductor, Samsung, ScienceScope, technology Will Save Us and The Wellcome Trust.

Product Champions include, Bluetooth SIG, Bright Future, Cannybots, Cisco, Code Club, Coderdojo, Code Kingdoms, Creative Digital Solutions, CultureTECH, Institution of Engineering and Technology, Kitronik, London Connected Learning Centre, MyMiniFactory, Python Software Foundation, STEMNET, TeenTech and the Tinder Foundation.

Comprehensive details can be found at