But the Board Support Packages from typical vendors tend to be as-closed-as-possible, with limited access to documentation, software updates and support for small customers. RPi comes from a different direction, much more open and accessible. So hopefully they will drag/push the vendors to be this type of open from the start in the RISC-V space.
Yes, I was thinking from the perspective of the end user, as in those of normal embedded devices are intentionally ignorant of it's workings... where as the audience of the raspberry pi is the exact opposite.
Though 2 of 3 founders of https://www.lowrisc.org/ worked on Raspberry PI, that is a common connection.
For someone like Western Digital, that's probably a huge deal. I don't think it saves the RPi folks much. I suspect they get a loss leader deal. The total volume can't be that high, but it's good press for Texas Instruments.