I remember when I saw my first Stick Computer, the Rikomagic MK802. I was entranced. I poured over the technical specs and found that what they were basically giving me was a capable little tablet – without the tablet! From that moment on I was immediately hooked on Stick Computing. Right away I saw the potential of this new form of personal computer and how I could use them – not only as a very capable media player, but also as a more general productivity type of device.
Since you’re already here and reading this, I don’t have to sell you on the concept, so let’s talk about specifics. The main problem with the first generation of Stick Computers is they have limited processing power. The MK802, while nice, has only a single core processor and single core graphics processor. If you don’t know what that means just yet, don’t worry, you’ll catch on as we go on. It’s enough to know that things have gotten a bit more powerful.
The second generation of Stick PC’s upgraded both the central processing unit and the graphics processor to dual and quad cores. These units are now selling for less than $50. That means you get more than twice the computing power in the same package and for virtually the same price!
The UG802 is the first Mini Android PC to feature Rockchip’s RK3066, Cortex-A9, dual core processor, running at 1.2Ghz (max. 1.6Ghz).
You can check out the lastest updated version of the Ug802 Mini Pc on Amazon.
What I like about the UG802
This is a great way to get started with Stick Computing. It’s still one of the lowest price models available on the market. With its built-in WiFi and HDMI dongle you can connect it to your home network and hook it up to the big screen TV for fully functional Android computer. You’ll be surfing the web, playing games and checking email within minutes of plugging it into your television.
Because it runs Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean) you get access to Google Play and you can watch 1080p HD videos from Youtube, Netflix, Google Play and HBO Go. For external connections to accessories such as keyboards and ethernet adaptors it has 2 USB ports. An SD card slot enables you expand internal memory up to 32GB, allowing you to run the most demanding Android apps.
With a bit of customization, as you’ll read in the Tips below, the UG802 is a mini-wonder that can nearly replace a much more complicated, costly, and energy consuming HTPC.
Overall I would give the UG802 3.5 out of 5 stars and that’s only because of a few minor details I’ve listed in the Pros and Cons below. For the price performance you’d be hard pressed to find a better value.
Company Product Information
Shenzhen Ugoos Technology Co. Ltd was established in 2004. They are a reliable manufacturer and exporter of dual core Mini PC’s. Their products are exported to the EU, USA, and many other parts of the world. They have a reputation for quality products and excellent service.
In June 2012 they began production of the dual core Android Mini PC known as the UG802.
What’s in the Box
- UG802 Android Mini PC 1.2ghz Dual Core Cortex-A9 Rockchip 3066
- Getting Started Guide
- Power Adapter with USB connector cable
Here’s a nice and introduction video to give you an idea of what it looks like and how it looks when it’s connected to your tv and operating.
Unboxing the UG802
Features and Specifications
- Rockchip RK3066, Cortex-A9, dual core processor, running at 1.2Ghz (max. 1.6Ghz).
- Quad-core Mali-400 Graphics Processing Unit for high quality video playback and 3D gaming
- 1GB DDR3 RAM, 4GB Internal Flash Storage(1.1GB OS, 825MB Apps, 2GB user content), support for up to 32GB Micro SD card
- Built in 802.11b/g/n WiFi wireless network access, HDMI, USB and MicroSD card ports
|Max Screen Resolution||1080P|
|RAM||1GB SDRAM DDR3|
|Graphics||Quad Core Mali-400|
|Number of USB Ports||2|
|Dimensions||1.60 x 0.70 x 3.90 inches|
|Hard Drive Interface||USB 2.0, Solid State|
Pros and Cons
- Fast booting and fast application load times
- It comes with Jelly Bean (Android 4.1) not Ice Cream Sandwich (4.04) as the spec sheet indicates.
- High Definition (1080p) streaming video from Youtube, Netflix, Google Play and HBO Go is very good.
- 2 USB ports for Expansion
- SD Memory Expansion up to 32GB
- Easy Installation and Setup
- Some users have complained about WiFi reception, but others have stated having no problems.
- The included power supply has been an issue for some owners.
- European buyers have complained about the lack of appropriate power connector.
Compared to the first generation of Stick Computers, the UG802 is a big step forward in performance and expandability. It isn’t the most powerful of the current crop of sticks but with performance at an entry level price it still makes a great choice.
Many buyers prefer to get sticks utilizing the Rockchip RK3066 because of the availability of Ubuntu Linux. A variation of Ubuntu 12.10, called PicUntu is available for free download at this website. Picuntu supports screen resolutions up to 1920 x 1080 pixels, and supports WiFi, Ethernet, audio, and other core functions.
Once you’ve installed the base PicUntu you can install additional software to either use your device as a server or a portable computer. Available packages including Apache, Samba, Joomla, Flash, Java, and desktop environments including Xfce and GNOME.
You’ll need access to a computer running Linux to install PicUntu.
There are a growing number of ROM upgrades to be found for the UG802. It should be stressed that you should only attempt this if you know what you’re doing. Improperly flashing a ROM can cause your device to become non-functional!
According to various sources, one of the better upgrades is called the Finless ROM. You can find the upgrade in the FreakTab forums under the Tech Room section. As I mentioned, only experts should attempt this there is no source for the original firmware should you have problems.
This device requires a 5v 2amp power supply to operate. Checking online for common problems I ran across several reviewers advising users to throw away the included power supply. I’m not sure I’d go that far until I did more diligence. If you do find sporadic problems with the device resetting or cutting out, you may want to explore this further.
Who is the product for?
The UG802 is an excellent all around Stick Computer. For those looking for an inexpensive and simple Android TV device, it can serve as the center of a powerful media hub in your living room, or provide a secondary media device for a game or child’s room. With an added keyboard, mouse and some memory the UG802 could also serve nicely as a general home computer. For the hobbyist, with upgrades and Linux software, this computer can provide endless hours of experimentation and expansion.
Some customer reviews:
“MiniPC is just amazing. It is capable of normal tablet-things, but also you can use it as Media Player in a HDMI-USB tv. Just plug and fly. Good response and invisible behind tv.”
“Fast boot up time. Applications runs smoothly. Full android support. No flash problems and easy installation.”
“Very good device for the price. Works as expected out of the box. Just plug and play. Comes with market, install apps, works with external HDD. Very good with Netflix.”
“Not many WOW moments in tech these days – but these stick PCs are definitely a game-changer. Plenty of power to run any android app we’ve installed on a full 1080P display. Got a small usb wireless keyboard to go with it. Comes with everything you need.”
Video Review of the UG802
Summing it up
In conclusion, I’d recommend the UG802 as an inexpensive and easy-to-use solution for those who want to stream video or listen to music from the internet. Android 4.1 runs fast and has all the apps you’d expect on your tablet. With a little bit of effort to upgrade to Linux and some added peripherals, it can also become a full-fledged PC, but one that you can hook up quickly and easily to any available TV/Monitor HDMI port.