What Is a Mini PC & What Are Its Uses?


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These days, the Mac mini is sold with Apple silicon while maintaining the same form factor it has used since 2010. In spring 2022, Apple introduced the Mac Studio, which has the same footprint as the mini but increases its height to make room for a beefier fan and additional cooling. While still technically fitting into the mini PC category, it is intended for heavy-duty workloads that lean on graphics or raw processing power, such as video editing.

The Benefits of Intel NUCs — Why They’re Worth It

In the early 2010s, Intel was looking to exit the traditional PC motherboard space, which was effectively supported by an array of third-party manufacturers, while still finding a way to leverage the internal resources that supported the sector.

The solution Intel implemented was an experimental project called the NUC, says Deatherage, who was Intel’s director of product marketing at the time.

“A few of us sat around a table one day and said, ‘What if we made the smallest motherboard we possibly can with our engineering expertise and all that good stuff that could scale from an Atom processor up to Core i7?’” he recalls. “That was kind of the genesis of this 4-by-4 board, as we called it at the time.”

The 4-inch board, eventually given an enclosure and a name, has evolved into one of the most interesting segments of desktop computing. In its earliest iteration, a legacy-free ethos drove the product’s development so aggressively that the NUC’s initial version didn’t come with an Ethernet port at all.

“A lot of people don’t even use their LAN jack, and I think we were right there, but that ended up making the product not very successful,” Deatherage says, noting that once Intel added one, the concept began to find success in the market.

EXPLORE: Find out how to prepare your organization’s network to handle AI applications.

Deatherage’s role in developing the NUC helped lead to his current position at Simply NUC. He says Simply NUC has found customer bases in an array of areas beyond the desktop paradigm, especially around digital signage, as equipment for industrial machines, as a point-of-sale retail management tool and even as a way to power virtual…