Cheap and easy if you already have a screen

Published 15.06.2015 by Favo

Intel Compute Stick is a cheap and simple PC which can help you if you have a public screen but lack the PC for it. Compute Stick is struggling with heavy loads, but our experience is that it works well on public screens with relatively light content.

Struggles with heavy loads

Intel's advertisement says "It's Not Like a Computer. It Is a Computer". That claim we will leave with Intel. It takes a while to get started and update it, and the fan is working hard when we run a video off of it. Few of us would like to work on a PC with such low capacity.

But for displaying a public screen it can work well. After having run the Windows-version for a few weeks on a public screen with text, images, news and calendar, it is our experience that it works fine. It is fascinating that they have managed to squeeze a full Windows 8.1 into that small thing.

Easy to place

Only 10 cm long, 4 cm wide and 12 mm thick it is easy to place it behind the screen. It looks like a large memory stick, but at the end of it, there is an HDMI-exit. The HDMI-cable, which is included, makes you able to not have to plug it straight into the screen's HDMI-space, and it is easy to place it behind the screen.

Compute Stick has a built-in wifi, and you can connect to keyboard and mouse (which must be bought separately) and other devices via USB or bluetooth. The machine gets electricity from an electricity adapter which is connected through micro-usb.


The cost of a Compute Stick with Windows is low, and if you choose Compute Stick with Linux, which has less storage space and memory, it is even cheaper.

Compute Stick is probably not a longterm solution, but it is interesting if you want something cheap to get started, or if you want to prolong the life time of a screen you already have.

If you do not have a screen already, we recommend that you read about Samsung's screens with a built-in browser, where you unlike the Compute Stick, among other things can make the machine turn itself on and off automatically.

Go to archive