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Project Ara is still in pieces, but coming together nicely

The world’s first truly modular smartphone, Project Ara, looks to be coming together nicely in Phonebloks’ latest video.

The technology industry as a whole is always looking for greener, more sustainable ways of creating new products for everyday life. The modular smartphone has been a concept that many have toyed with, but never really invested in. That is, of course, with the exception of Project Ara.

The people at Phonebloks have been putting some real R&D time into creating a working prototype and filmed a little trip around Google’s offices, introducing us to the team responsible for attempting to create the world’s first truly modular smartphone.

Whilst a single complete device doesn’t make an appearance in the video, we do get a glimpse of various key aspects of the development process. We see an application compatibility test between the Android operating system and the various key pieces of hardware.

Two team members are seen working on the removable, modular sections, which attach using electro-permanent magnets, the mechanism which will allow users to slot alternate components in and out of the ‘Endo’ (short for endoskeleton).

Daniel Makoski, design lead in Google’s Advanced Technologies and Projects group, explains how the modular design lends itself to becoming an aesthetic feature itself that helps create the Ara’s distinctive look. He also discusses some of the design decisions, which help create the modular components too.

Project Ara

Project Ara’s first developer conference is set to take place on April 15th and April 16th in Mountain View around Google’s HQ. You’ll be able to tune in online to watch remotely too.

Would you be interested in swapping out your conventional smartphone for handset that you could upgrade piece by piece? Let us know your thoughts down below.

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