Small companies usually lack the dedicated engineering

Small companies usually lack the dedicated engineering facilities required for prototyping parts with extremely fine pitch – getting BGA soldered at home is tremendously difficult and almost impossible. A nice way to get small companies interested in your product involves offering evaluation boards. These usually end up in a breadboard or a socket, where the pitch of 2.54 millimeters has established itself as a quasi-standard. This odd pitch, quite incidentially, dates back to imperial units – it is equal to 0.1 inch

When designing such breakout boards, cost should not be the primary factor. Saving money on the headers is stupid – if they corrode, precision parts get problems. Due to that, using high-quality mechanicals from an established company such as TE Connectivity makes perfect sense.

The 5-146281-* family can be considered the standard offering for the 2.54mm standard. They are series of pins attached to one another, which can be broken down with scissors if smaller dimensions are needed. Acquiring them is not particularly difficult. TE Connectivity offer them in a range from 1 to 40 pins in a single row, the individual part numbers can be taken from the table.