Have you been waiting patiently for your Raspberry Pi to turn up in the post? Me too. I was expecting to get it late last week, but a check on my order status shows it is on back order. But the reason for the delay isn’t just high demand anymore. The distributors of the tiny PC have thrown another problem into the mix: they are refusing to sell the device until it receives CE compliance.
Both RS Components and element14/Premier Farnell have decided to hold off on fulfilling orders until the Raspberry Pi has obtained CE marking. Having CE stamped on a product means the manufacturer guarantees it conforms to European Economic Area directives and legislation. It ensures the device can move freely throughout the European Union countries having met health, safety, and environmental protection requirements.
The Raspberry Pi Foundation didn’t think they required CE marking because the Raspberry Pi is an unfinished product. This is how the Beagleboard manages to bypass CE compliance. But as Raspberry Pi signed distribution contracts, they have to solve the problem or see Raspberry Pi remain unshipped to thousands of waiting geeks.
It doesn’t look like those outside of the EU are any better off, either. The FCC apparently mirrors CE compliance for the most part, so the same issue would most likely occur in the US.
Work is now underway to gain CE compliance, and the good news is it doesn’t look as though it will take that long. Emissions from the Raspberry Pi easily meet category A requirements, and may even achieve the tougher category B standard. Once the results of an EMC test are back both RS Components and Farnell should release updated shipping dates. That doesn’t stop this being a frustrating extension of the waiting time to get one, though.
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