Breaking News
Comments
Oldest First | Newest First | Threaded View
Sheetal.Pandey
User Rank
Manager
Project Ara
Sheetal.Pandey   8/27/2014 1:18:42 PM
NO RATINGS
In the starting it might look like science fiction, but modular smartphone seems to be a good concept at least for the engineering consumers so they can decide which module to choose from...hope you can choose the OS too..as the hardware modules..

bertkaye
User Rank
Rookie
Was done in the past by General Magic
bertkaye   8/27/2014 3:22:53 PM
NO RATINGS
General Magic, back in the PDA days, did exactly this. They created a PDA architecture that had a hardware bus and an OS that accepted snap-on peripherals. It would for example allow police to attach a police band transceiver to the PDA or civilians to use a consumer phone RF module. Google might need to be careful of patents here.

chanj0
User Rank
CEO
Re: Project Ara
chanj0   8/27/2014 11:41:24 PM
NO RATINGS
Modular architecture is not new. Configurable modular mobile phone is somewhat innovation. The article pinpoints a very good point that the development cost is high. The makers will probably need to sell in high volume to make the money back. However, one of the key motivations of the concept is to minimize consumers keep changing the complete device instead just upgrade a few modules to make it better.

In addition, the phone might actually go backward to the evolution of semi-conductor. In the old days, a device will contain a MCU and a number of peripherials. To reduce size, semi-conductor companies integrates peripherials into the MCU which reduces the packaging. Now, as the chips get smaller, it leaves space for something else such as battery and package for modules. With this said, I can't see a modular smart phone will be smaller than a regular smart phone. Unless it carries a extremely appealing features, it can only be in a very nitch market.

Although the modular concept may not apply well to mobile phone, I believe it may apply really well elsewhere. Lego can actually put this concept into its block to make it more fun and attractive, don't you think? :)

docdivakar
User Rank
Manager
Re: Project Ara
docdivakar   8/28/2014 7:19:48 PM
NO RATINGS
@chanj0 I agree, the concept of modular smart phones repeats to the forefront of news every year or so. You may be right that the recent ones like Project Ara may seem different and promising because of innovations made in all fronts of mobile technology. But I am almost tempted to say this (Ara) too shall pass!

One has to put this in perspective with respect to life cycles of mobile devices which tend to be getting shorter and shorter. I remember my first cell phone was with me for almost 4 years before I made a switch. These days I am upgrading every year or so because the costs continue to come down drastically.

If the cost of service / connectivity comes down steeply, it willl not make sense to have bulkier handsets just because you can swap a pluggable communication card between a phone and a tablet.

I assume folks at Google also do their diligence on commercial viability of such products before embarking on a 'science' project!

MP Divakar

AZskibum
User Rank
CEO
Re: Project Ara
AZskibum   8/28/2014 10:56:54 PM
NO RATINGS
It's only science fiction until it becomes consumer fact -- even if it is not exceptionally high volume consumer fact.

Susan Rambo
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Project Ara
Susan Rambo   8/29/2014 5:26:13 AM
NO RATINGS
Nicely put.

4026123
User Rank
Rookie
Great Great
4026123   9/9/2014 5:17:59 AM
NO RATINGS
Clearly, we're all looking forward to test this innovation.

I'm especially looking forward to seeing what modules will be developed.

it looks really fun air.

projet-ara.com



EE Life
Frankenstein's Fix, Teardowns, Sideshows, Design Contests, Reader Content & More
Max Maxfield

Feast Your Orbs on My Jiggly Exercise Machine
Max Maxfield
46 comments
Last weekend, I was chatting with my mother on the phone. She's all excited that I'm coming over to visit for a week in November. "I'll be seeing you in only seven weeks," she trilled ...

Glen Chenier

Missing Datasheet Details Can Cause Problems
Glen Chenier
3 comments
It is often said that "the devil is in the details." All too often those details are hidden deep within a datasheet, where you can easily overlook them. When a datasheet reference circuit ...

David Blaza

RadioShack: The End Is Nigh!
David Blaza
120 comments
I'm feeling a little nostalgic today as I read about what looks like the imminent demise of RadioShack, at least as we currently know it. An old ubiquitous cartoon image popped into my ...

Larry Desjardin

Engineers Should Study Finance: 5 Reasons Why
Larry Desjardin
46 comments
I'm a big proponent of engineers learning financial basics. Why? Because engineers are making decisions all the time, in multiple ways. Having a good financial understanding guides these ...

Flash Poll
Top Comments of the Week
Like Us on Facebook
EE Times on Twitter
EE Times Twitter Feed

Datasheets.com Parts Search

185 million searchable parts
(please enter a part number or hit search to begin)