Raspberry Pi OS is the New Raspbian!
At the end of May 2020, Raspberry Pi launched the brand-new 8GB Raspberry Pi 4. It also updated Raspbian – now Raspberry Pi OS – with new features to help you make the most of the increasing capabilities of your Pi.
Here are some of the most significant changes to come with the new Raspberry Pi OS:
Raspberry Pi has been working to improve the accessibility of the Desktop for those with visual impairments. One initiative on this front has been the addition of the Orca screen reader (which has now even gone through some bug fixes).
Another recommendation from advocacy organization Ability Net has been to add a screen magnifier - a development that proved to be harder than expected! Developers tried to work with existing programs, but couldn’t achieve the user experience standards that already exist in systems like MacOS and Ubuntu.
So, a brand-new Magnifier program has been developed!
You can install it by launching Recommended Applications and then selecting Magnifier under Universal Access. (Note: you will need to reboot after installation).
Hopefully this new feature helps make the Pi more inclusive. It can also even help those without a visual impairment to see more of the finer details of the graphics, so everyone is encouraged to experiment with it!
Another new feature is the Bookshelf application.
Avid Pi lovers probably know that the organization has its own publishing company, Raspberry Pi Press, that publishes a variety of monthly magazines such as HackSpace, Wireframe, and TheMagPi, in addition to other books and journals. There are available for purchase in physical form or can be downloaded as free PDFs.
Now, all of this content will be easier to access via Bookshelf, which you’ll find under the Main Menu in the Help section.
If you want to read any title, you can just double-click on it – it will either open immediately in Chromium or start to download and open automatically once the download is complete.
Do you think there’s anything still missing from Raspberry Pi? Even with all the upgrades and improvements…is there some functionality or feature you’re still yearning for?
If so, the developers at Raspberry Pi want to know. So much so, they’ve added a new quick 4-question survey that will pop up the first time you launch Chromium on a new image. The purpose is to gather feedback from as many actual users as possible, so they can plan to offer the support and improvements the community really needs.
The new Raspberry Pi OS also features other minor changes and the typical bug fixes that come with any new upgrade. You can find the full details in the release notes, if you’re interested.
One such change that might make a difference is a modification to the audio setup that should make managing multiple audio output devices from the two HDMI socket more compatible with third-party software. However, you may need to re-select your preferred audio output if you install the update.
Get the New Raspberry Pi OS!
You’ll have the option to get the full upgrade, or just the Magnifier or the Bookshelf if you prefer.
And be sure to bookmark and return to our Vilros blog for more news and project inspiration for your Pi!