Why You Shouldn't Use Arduino UNO

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Arduino is an awesome platform, that allows you to create almost everything you can imagine with a really tiny investment and some basic hardware knowledge.

Everyone starts using Arduino UNO for development, and we see a lot of projects using this board, but there are a few good reasons why you shouldn’t use UNO…

Arduino UNO is expensive

Arduino UNO is one of the most expensive boards that features the ATMega328 compared with other Arduino models like Mini, Micro, or Lilypad. There are tons of them to choose from)!

Model Price (on store.arduino.cc)
UNO 20€
Micro 18€
Mini 14€
Lillypad 16€

Note that these prices come from the oficial Arduino store. However you can easily find compatible clonic boards on Amazon, Ebay or Aliexpress, at a fraction of the price.

You could also use a bare ATMega328 like we did in our first Watchduino or in our light sensor with RF24 radio module.

Arduino UNO is big

Arduino UNO is a big board, and you probably going to use a bread board next to it, which makes your whole development prototype really complex.

Instead of that, use a Nano or Micro attached to a bread board directly.

Arduino UNO is not power-efficient

Most of the projects built with Arduino will be wireless and battery-powered, so the device should be power-efficient, but Arduino UNO is not.

Because Arduino UNO has a lot of hardware you don’t need, it consumes a lot more than its brothers:

  • USB controller
  • Too many leds

However, boards like Lilypad or Mini don’t have a USB controller, which reduces its normal consumption a few mAh, eg:

  • Standalone consumption for UNO: 28mAh
  • Standalone consumption for Mini: 13mAh

This measures have been taken when running a dummy sketch that does nothing (not even blinking a LED). If you make heavier computations or put the Arduino to sleep, measurements will vary.

Arduino UNO uses USB-B connector

Seriously?? in this day and age?

Arduino UNO is not designed for production

Because it’s big, and has a very high consumption, you shouldn’t ever use it in a prototype, like a remote controlled device, or a batery-powered-sensor, or a smartwatch.

Also, you probably don’t want to develop in a hardware that won’t match the final product specs, do you ?


The only reason why you could want to use UNO is to use a shield, but in most of the cases they’re not worth it.

Our personal preference is Arduino Mini: it’s small, cheap and has the lowest consumption in its family.

So do yourself a favor and use any of the other boards available instead of using UNO again.