CIO Today

CIO Today Network Sites:   Top Tech News  |   CIO Today   |   Mobile Tech Today   |   Data Storage Today
Daily Briefing for Technology's Top Decision-Makers
Vblock™ Systems:
Advanced converged infrastructure
increases productivity & lowers costs.

www.vce.com
Sunday, April 20th 
The future of tape is here.
This ad will display for the next 20 seconds. Please click for more information, or scroll down to pass the ad, or Close Ad.
Trending Topics:   Security Heartbleed Big Data Cloud Computing Windows XP Data Centers OS X Mavericks
Home
Enterprise Software
Enterprise Hardware
Big Data
Network Security
Cloud Computing
CRM Systems
Data Storage
Operating Systems
Communications
CIO Issues
Mobile Tech
Chips & Processors
World Wide Web
Business Briefing
After Hours
Press Releases
 
Free Newsletters
Top CIO News
 
Mobile Tech Today
 

Mobile Industry News

Google Pushes Ahead with DIY Modular Phone Concept

Google Pushes Ahead with DIY Modular Phone Concept
February 27, 2014 10:28AM

Bookmark and Share
A Project Ara Wi-Fi basic phone for about $50 is planned by Google for release about a year from now, with additional prices for modular add-ons. Project Ara consumers would have the ability, for instance, to add the kind of cellular connections they want, better screens, faster processors, cameras or other phone modules to fit their needs and wallets.

APC has an established a reputation for solid products that virtually pay for themselves upon installation. Who has time to spend worrying about system downtime? APC makes it easy for you to focus on business growth instead of business downtime with reliable data center systems and IT solutions. Learn more here.

The build-your-own-phone movement has taken another few steps forward. On Wednesday, Google announced it will host developer conferences and release a toolkit for modular phones.

Project Ara, announced by Motorola Mobility last October, is the name of an R&D effort to create a phone platform where users could swap and add hardware as well as software components, creating their own customized model. Originally started in Motorola Mobility, Google is keeping Ara and its parent organization, the Advanced Technology and Projects (ATAP) Group, even as the Motorola division moves to its new owner, Lenovo.

Three Google Ara Developers' Conferences are now scheduled, with the first one in mid-April. They will focus on the alpha version of the Ara Module Developers' Kit, or MDK, a free and open platform spec and reference implementation that is being targeted for release in early April.

Basic Phone for $50?

The conferences will review existing and planned features of the emerging Ara platform, as well as announce prizes for module development.

According to news reports, Google plans to release about a year from now an Ara Wi-Fi basic phone for about $50, with additional prices for add-ons. Users would have the ability, for instance, to add the kind of cellular connection they want, a better screen, a faster processor, a camera or other enhancements to fit their needs and wallet.

In November, Motorola signed an agreement with 3D printer solution provider 3D Systems to create facilities for building modular parts.

This not only raised the possibility that a manufacturer like 3D Systems could build customized parts on order and en masse, but that users with access to 3D printers might print at least some of their own modular components. For instance, a user might 3D print the enclosure and acquire the snap-in circuitry from a provider. Project Ara is already investigating the use of public kiosks for users to get -- or make -- their components on the spot.

'Hardware Manifestation'

Ross Rubin, principal analyst for industry research firm Reticle Research, pointed out to us that Project Ara is "a hardware manifestation of what Google's Android provides" as a customizable, open-source mobile operating system.

He noted that a modular phone is "the anti-iPhone," given that Apple is known for "its tightly integrated machines." It also runs counter, Rubin said, to "what we've been seeing over the last several decades" as mobile devices have offered more and more functions and higher capabilities in single packages.

It is unlikely a phone composed of snap-on modules will approach the sleek and stylish look of many current mobile smartphones. Rubin acknowledged that a counter-trend might find the same appeal in overtly diverse components that, say, has made the mix-and-match colors of Fiestaware dishes into its own style.

The biggest question, of course, is whether modular phones would only appeal to a techie hobbyist-like market, or if they might reach a broader market. Rubin said that "most consumers are just looking for something that can meet with design and functional needs," although he acknowledged that customizability and adding capabilities as needs and budgets increase might appeal to a larger audience than just techies.

Tell Us What You Think
Comment:

Name:

Parabellum:

Posted: 2014-03-07 @ 2:38pm PT
I hope they do the same for Tablets... I am not buying another tablet until they do. I barely bought my tf700t 18 months ago and it is already slowing down due to low RAM.

IwantOneNow:

Posted: 2014-03-06 @ 7:15pm PT
and a new industry will be born!!
pretty cool

Tim:

Posted: 2014-03-05 @ 2:00pm PT
I think this is a great innovation. I had wished for it a few years ago, and now it is going to be an actual thing.

Being a low-income student, I could buy a cheap, crappy phone with all the functionality of a flip phone, and when I have the money, upgrade the camera.

One wouldn't have to wait for the phone with everything they want to come out, they could get a phone as soon as they could afford one and then make it better as they get more money.

Tav-El:

Posted: 2014-03-03 @ 7:15am PT
David, it means that it automatically has WiFi capabilities but, if you want a cellular connection, it's an add-on, just like any other.

David vitarelli:

Posted: 2014-03-02 @ 8:03am PT
Does that mean no sprint bill every month and does the phone only work when wifi is available?

naveen:

Posted: 2014-02-28 @ 9:11am PT
"I will wait for a better smart phone", bet you had this thought, but ended up buying one within a week and regretted too (no offence BB Z10 users, but seriously loosing 25Gs is sad). Phonebloks, one need not ever have a second thought on better models in the future.

Graham Bell would have cried out of happiness seeing what we do with his invention.



 Mobile Industry News
1. Google, Rockstar Suit Stays in Calif.
2. Google Earnings, Sales Disappoint
3. Profit and Revenue Slip for IBM
4. Malware Targets Facebook Users
5. Intel Reports Lower 1Q Net Income




 Most Popular Articles
1. BlackBerry Drops T-Mobile After Nasty Spat
2. Cisco, IBM Launch Internet of Things Consortium
3. Salesforce CRM Gets Industry Specific for Internet of Customers
4. Intel Bets on Cloudera for Big Data Analytics
5. SAP HANA Data Warehouse App Gets Faster Analytics

Have an informed opinion on this story?
Send a Letter to the Editor.
We want to know what you think.
Send us your Feedback.

 Related Topics  Latest News & Special Reports

  Galaxy S5 Phone: Less Can Be More
  Heartbleed Exploit Could Cost Millions
  Poll: A Mix of Feelings on Future Tech
  Google, Rockstar Suit Stays in Calif.
  Michaels: Nearly 3M Cards Breached

 Technology Marketplace

Business Intelligence
Get real-time, cloud-based information services with Neustar.
 
Cloud Computing
BMC's I.T. solutions unleash the power of your business
Next Generation Data Center Is Here! Vblock™ Systems from VCE
 
Contact Centers
HP delivers the future of the contact center with HP Qfiniti 10.
 
Data Storage
Next Generation Data Center Is Here! Vblock™ Systems from VCE
Barium Ferrite (BaFe) is the future of tape.
2.5" Enterprise-class SATA & SAS SSDs for server & storage applications
 
Enterprise Hardware
Barium Ferrite (BaFe) is the future of tape.
2.5" Enterprise-class SATA & SAS SSDs for server & storage applications
 
Enterprise I.T.
BMC's I.T. solutions unleash the power of your business
 
Hardware
Protect your network with APC Smart-UPS battery backup
 
Network Security
Protect your network with APC Smart-UPS battery backup
 

Network Security Spotlight
Heartbleed Could Cost Millions, Could Have Been Prevented
Early estimates of Heartbleed’s cost to enterprises are running in the millions. The reason: revoking all the SSL certificates the bug exposed will come at a very hefty price. Some say it all could have been avoided.
 
Michaels Says Nearly 3M Credit, Debit Cards Breached
Arts and crafts retail giant Michaels Stores has confirmed that a data breach at its POS terminals from May 2013 to Jan. 2014 may have exposed nearly 3 million customer credit and debit cards.
 
Google's Street View Software Unravels CAPTCHAs
The latest software Google uses for its Street View cars to read street numbers in images for Google Maps works so well that it also solves CAPTCHAs, those puzzles designed to defeat bots.
 

Enterprise Hardware Spotlight
Vaio Fit 11A Battery Danger Forces Recall by Sony
Using a Sony Vaio Fit 11A laptop? It's time to send it back to Sony. In fact, Sony is encouraging people to stop using the laptop after several reports of its Panasonic battery overheating.
 
Continued Drop in Global PC Shipments Slows
Worldwide shipments of PCs fell during the first three months of the year, but the global slump in PC demand may be easing, with a considerable slowdown from last year's drops.
 
Google Glass Finds a Home in Medical Education, Practice
The innovative headpiece may find its niche in markets where hands-free access to data can be a big advantage. Glass experiments for doctors are already under way, with some promising results.
 

Mobile Technology Spotlight
Review: Siri-Like Cortana Fills Windows Phone Gap
With the new Cortana virtual assistant, Windows catches up with Apple's iOS and Google's Android in a major way, taking some of the best parts of Apple's and Google's virtual assistants, with new tools too.
 
With Galaxy S5, Samsung Proves Less Can Be More
Samsung has produced the most formidable rival yet to the iPhone 5s: the Galaxy S5. The device is the fifth edition of the company's successful line of Galaxy S smartphones, and shows less can be more.
 
Facebook Rolls Out Potentially Intrusive Location-Sharing
Looking for friends? Facebook users in the U.S. will soon be able to see which of their friends are nearby, using a smartphone's GPS. Could be a cool feature in some cases, or way too much information.
 

Navigation
CIO Today
Home/Top News | Enterprise Software | Enterprise Hardware | Big Data | Network Security | Cloud Computing | CRM Systems
Data Storage | Operating Systems | Communications | CIO Issues | Mobile Tech | Chips & Processors | World Wide Web
Business Briefing | After Hours | Press Releases
Also visit these Enterprise Technology Sites
Top Tech News | CIO Today | Mobile Tech Today | Data Storage Today

Services:
FreeNewsFeed | Free Newsletters | XML/RSS Feed

About CIO Today Network | How To Contact Us | Article Reprints | Services for PR Pros (In partnership with NewsFactor) | Top Tech Wire | How To Advertise

Privacy Policy | Terms of Service
© Copyright 2000-2014 CIO Today. All rights reserved. Article rating technology by Blogowogo. Member of Accuserve Ad Network.