Google Releases More Details on Secret Project Ara
More details have been released about Google’s (NASDAQ:GOOG) (NASDAQ:GOOGL) Project Ara, as the first developer resources for the modular phone have come out after some footage of the Google team discussing the project showed up online earlier this week. The complete module developers kit can be downloaded here, and TechCrunch broke down some of the more important features of the phone-in-the-works.
Google’s Advanced Technology and Projects (ATAP) group released the Module Developers Kit (MDK) that describes Ara. “The Ara platform consists of an on-device packet-switched data network based on the MIPI UniPro protocol stack, a flexible power bus, and an elegant industrial design that mechanically unites the modules with an endoskeleton,” the MDK reads.
If that’s enough to leave your head spinning, here’s a slightly simplified explanation of what a module phone is: A module phone is one that could have various components switched in and out on the fly. If the phone camera isn’t cutting it, a user could slide out the camera unit and put in a better camera. If the processor is a year old and too slow for the latest apps, a new one could be put in to replace it. The concept for Ara even included different screens and physical keyboard setups.
Such a set-up could make the current norm of waiting two long years to replace an outdated smartphone, at which point the entire device is thrown out in favor of all new parts, obsolete. This would be good for the environment, less wasteful overall, and could save consumers money by allowing them to replace the parts necessary when they need replacing, rather than waiting until a contract allows the entire device to be replaced.