BeagleBones have always been a great choice if you wanted the power of a full operating system with the low-level control of a microcontroller. The Black Wireless adds Bluetooth 4.1 and Wi-Fi to their most popular release. As a Linux machine it is a little less powerful than the Raspberry Pi 3, but the number of GPIO pins and real-time access to them still make it stand out as a maker tool.

It also has the advantage of being able to install the operating system onto the onboard flash storage, and makes it easy to get started by connecting via USB — or now Wi-Fi — to a web server hosted on the board.