Initial Tests of "Qubie Zero"

A project log for Qubie

Qubie is a small wireless device that measures waiting time at a polling place for the benefit of both election jurisdictions and citizens.

Daniel M. ZimmermanDaniel M. Zimmerman 09/12/2016 at 23:180 Comments

As part of trying to make Qubie less expensive, we've been experimenting with using different components. Meet Qubie Zero:

Qubie Zero is just like Qubie, with two key differences:

  1. It uses a Raspberry Pi Zero instead of a Raspberry Pi 3.
  2. It has no Bluetooth LE status notifications.

Our initial tests show that Qubie and Qubie Zero record essentially the same device information when running side-by-side, and that Qubie Zero can run for more than 40 hours on a fully charged 13400 mAh battery pack. This compares to our previous runs of 36 hours for Qubie on a fully charged 18500 mAh battery pack, meaning that Qubie Zero is far more power-efficient - it seems that the processor draw outweighs the WiFi radio draw, which is a bit of a surprise considering how little computation we're having Qubie(s) do. Qubie Zero is also a lot cheaper, at $5 for a Raspberry Pi Zero vs. $39 for a Raspberry Pi 3. Our tests and evaluations continue...