Google and Motorola Unveil Modular Phone Concept With Project Ara

Hey, remember that time that some non-engineer came up with an idea for modular, LEGO-like phones called PhoneBloks and we all had a chuckle because it couldn’t be done?

Well, apparently it can. Or, at least, Motorola and its parent company Google think so.

Today, Motorola announced that it’s spent the past year or so working on a modular smartphone project called Project Ara.

From the Motorola Blog:

Meet Ara.

Led by Motorola’s Advanced Technology and Projects group, Project Ara is developing a free, open hardware platform for creating highly modular smartphones. We want to do for hardware what the Android platform has done for software: create a vibrant third-party developer ecosystem, lower the barriers to entry, increase the pace of innovation, and substantially compress development timelines.

Our goal is to drive a more thoughtful, expressive, and open relationship between users, developers, and their phones. To give you the power to decide what your phone does, how it looks, where and what it’s made of, how much it costs, and how long you’ll keep it.

If you’re just an average smartphone user, you might not be sure how such a device would make your life easier. TechCrunch has a few ideas, though the possibilities are pretty much endless:

 Are you a fan of physical keyboards? Attach one and start pecking out your emails. Need your phone to last a little longer? Swap out that battery module for a bigger one. The list goes on and on.

So, to all of you who laughed at the concept when the PhoneBloks video went viral, do you feel differently about it now?

(via TechCrunch)

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