tl;dr: Google’s Project Ara has been working on modular phones for a year, and they’ve just partnered with Phonebloks, after it reached roughly a million people. Coincidence?
In an earlier post, I talked about Phoneblocks & Thunderclap a movement by a Dutch designer to generate attention for a modular phone.
Well, since then, it appears that this movement has garnered an interest from a particularly big player; Google’s Project Ara.
Apparently Google has been working on trying to build an open hardware ecosystem for a few years now, and this recent push in attention have encouraged them to actively partner with Phoneblocks, which has now been adopted into Google Ara:
This is of course a pretty great thing; I for one am looking forward to a world with open sourced and modular hardware. It strikes me as the logical step towards creating competitive platforms that are still feature-rich.
There are a few skeptics who think this was all a Guerilla marketing strategy, in order to source demand before investing into production:
In any case, it’s interesting seeing this project develop; I certainly didn’t expect us to already be so close to a viable product, but I guess Google is good at being one step ahead.
The future is going to be fun.